AAP Rugby

Marshall initiated Farah’s Tigers return

By AAP Newswire

Robbie Farah has revealed a text message from Benji Marshall reunited the pair, enabling them to share career finales at Wests Tigers.

Farah and Marshall carpooled to the hooker's first day back at Tigers training on Thursday, after weeks of speculation about a return to his junior club following his messy exit in 2016.

The 34-year-old worked closely with coach Ivan Cleary during last year's World Cup with Lebanon but he revealed how the unlikely idea of a return was initiated by Marshall after he did likewise over the off-season.

"Benji texted me a couple of weeks ago and said, 'would you come back'? I said 'in a heartbeat'," Farah said after signing for the rest of 2018.

"He said he was going to speak to Ivan and let me know. Benji got back to me and said Ivan was keen.

"From there it was just trying to make things happen as quickly as possible, June 30 was coming up pretty quick and we had to get things moving.

"Just glad it's all been done and we can focus on the back-end of the season and trying to play finals."

Farah and Marshall were the Tigers' two biggest stars from their maiden NRL premiership in 2005 but it all went pear-shaped as Marshall left the club on bad terms in 2013.

Farah followed him three years later after a bitter fallout with then-coach Jason Taylor, which saw him playing reserve grade for the majority of his final year.

"It's crazy. I get goosebumps thinking about (playing together again)," Farah said.

"Our careers went down separate paths. To get back here and play together and finish our careers together is poetic.

"We grew up playing together and started our careers together here and it will be nice for us to get the opportunity to finish together."

Fittingly, Farah's first game back for the Tigers will come at spiritual home Leichhardt next Sunday against Gold Coast.

It was also where the former NSW hooker perched himself alone on the ledge of the old scoreboard and drank a farewell beer after missing what he hoped would be his final game at the ground.

"My biggest regret when I left a couple of years ago was not having the chance to have one last game at Leichhardt," he said.

"Obviously I got the farewell on the last day but not being able to play, I never thought I would play again there.

"To come back here and have an opportunity to finish my career is something I dreamed about."