Having got mauled 50-20 last week and their finals hopes in tatters, the last two games of the season would have been a perfect opportunity for Wests Tigers to blood some youngsters ahead of the 2022 season.
Why coach Michael Maguire has named Moses Mbye in the fullback position for this Sunday’s match with Penrith has left fans baffled.
Mbye has agreed to terms and will be at St George next year.
Yet he has been named to play, and, one assumes, will be selected again for the final game against the Bulldogs on Sunday week.
We’ll leave the full review of Maguire’s performance after the season ends, but at present let’s just say his team selections and game plans in 2021 have been diabolical.
In the meantime, fans of the joint venture are asking a lot of questions about where the club goes from here after missing the NRL finals for the tenth year in a row.
But let’s return to this Sunday’s match with one of the premiership favourites, the Penrith Panthers.
Maguire has named Mbye, David Nofoaluma, Tommy Talau, Michael Chee Kam and Ken Maumalo in the backline.
Jock Madden will come in for the injured Adam Doueihi and join Luke Brooks in the halves for this clash.
Up front, the props are Thomas Mikaele and Stefano Utoikamanu, with hooker Jacob Liddle returning after a one match suspension.
Shawn Blore, Luciano Leilua and Alex Twal complete the engine room in the starting line up.
Joe Ofahengaue, Jake Simpkin, Tom Amone and Alex Seyfarth will be on the interchange bench.
In some rare good news for the club, Seyfarth has signed a new two-year deal that will see him remain in Wests Tigers colours until at least the end of the 2023 NRL season.
A local junior, the dynanic forward was Jersey Flegg player of the year in 2018. He played reserve grade the following year before making his NRL debut in round three of the 2020 season.
“I’m really happy to be able to stay on with the club for another couple of years,” said the 22 year old.
“I grew up always wanting to play for Wests Tigers and it’s a dream come true to continue my playing future here.’’