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Wests Tigers will be hoping for a post Easter miracle

The changes made by Wests Tigers coach Michael Maguire to the team to face South Sydney Rabbitohs at Stadium Australia this Saturday are not quite as bad as re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

But in some ways they’re worse; they’re ho hum, seen it all before, next, please.

So Asu “AJ” Kepaoa returns after being dropped just two weeks earlier, while big, young prop Stefano Utoikamanu will get to start against the Bunnies.

Hooker Jacob Liddle, who has been playing well, has been dropped and replaced with Jake Simpkin (pictured), who should have been already playing in the 17.

And that’s it, more or less: Maguire’s not one for bold measures, even when that is the only remedy available.

But don’t get me wrong; I don’t think Maguire is the problem at Concord. In fact I have often said in these spaces that he’s the best asset of the club.

No, the problem is that the people with the power to make the big picture decisions, such as where the club is based, cannot see the wood for the trees.

It beggars belief that they want to be an inner city club with a limited future, when they could be based in the booming South Western Sydney region and have it all to themselves.

Yesterday at a Tommy Raudonikis function in Campbelltown I asked Paul Langmack what he thought was the long term answer to the misery at Concord.

Langers, one of the smartest footballers of all time, didn’t hesitate: “They have to move here, lock, stock and barrel,’’ he replied.

I rest my case, Your Honour, but will not hold my breath waiting for it to happen.

It will eventually, once people with vision are in power at Wests Tigers, but it could be another 10 years.

In the meantime, Maguire will be hoping for a post Easter miracle against the rampaging Souths, where a certain reject of his, one Benji Marshall, will be in the halves.

Sounds more like a nightmare’s on the cards.


1. Daine Laurie
2. David Nofoaluma
3. James Roberts
4. Asu “AJ” Kepaoa
5. Tommy Talau
6. Adam Doueihi
7. Luke Brooks
8. James Tamou (captain)
9. Jake Simpkin
10. Stefano Utoikamanu
11. Joe Ofahengaue
12. Luciano Leilua
13. Alex Twal

14. Moses Mbye
15. Luke Garner
16. Thomas Mikaele
17. Zane Musgrove

18. Jacob Liddle
19. Alex Seyfarth
20. Tom Amone
21. Michael Chee Kam


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