High praise for Gallen from fellow Blue
Paul Gallen's decision to step aside from State of Origin football after the 2016 season will leave a massive hole in the NSW Blues squad, but before he goes, teammate Robbie Farah is hoping to give his skipper the fairytale send-off he deserves.
The experienced duo have been through a lot with the Blues, from the highs of the 2014 series win, to the lows of the eight years prior, and Farah says after 10 years of service, NSW will do everything in its power to send Gallen out on top.
"He's been a great leader and a stalwart for New South Wales and I just hope we can send him out a winner," Farah said.
"If it is going to be his last year in Origin, there's no doubt that's going to be a massive motivator for us going into the series."
Farah belives Gallen has been a shining light for the Blues in an era dominated by the side north of the border, paying special tribute to the way his skipper has always led from the front.
"He's a person that leads by his actions and I think he's shown that every time he's put on a sky blue jumper," the NSW No.9 said.
"He never lets his teammates down or his state down. He just goes out there and gives it his all.
"When people speak about Paul Gallen, I think he'll be remembered for his sheer workload and the fact he leaves nothing out there on the field. He's been a great captain to play under and hopefully I get the opportunity to do that again this year."
Before Farah and Gallen can link up for the Blues, the pair will have to square off when the Tigers face the Sharks on Saturday evening at Campbelltown Stadium.
But don't expect sentiment to get in the way of what should be a cracking contest between the Origin pair.
"At the moment, he's the opposition this weekend so we won't be taking it lightly on him by any means and hopefully we can get one over him," the Tigers rake said.
"We've had some great battles in recent times and I'm looking forward to another one on Saturday."
With both sides sitting on two wins and two losses, the Round 5 showdown looms as an early season litmus test for their finals credentials.
Farah is bracing for a typically tight tussle against the Sharks, and is urging local fans to fill-out Campbelltown Stadium in what should be ideal conditions for free-flowing footy.
"Hopefully it's a big crowd because we haven't played them out here for a while. We had them in a trial match earlier this year and it ended in a 30-30 draw. I'm looking forward to a big crowd to make it very difficult for them."
"They're a very tough experienced side. You look at their forward pack and there's experience right through it and a lot pace out wide. They know how to grind out wins.
"They did it again on Monday night against Melbourne and they're always a tough team to play. They know how to win ugly so that's what we've got to be prepared for."