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Mid-season transfers add plenty of spice to the NRL season

The deadline for mid-season transfers is Saturday.

They started slow this year, with Trent Hodkinson moving from Cronulla to Manly, but in the past week or so, it has all been flipped upside down.

Obviously, many clubs were waiting to see how salary cap issues would be ironed out at Canterbury, with Moses Mbye and now Aaron Woods leaving the club for the Wests Tigers and the Sharks respectively.

In fact, a lot of movement has happened around the Wests Tigers, with forward JJ Felise joining Newcastle effective immediately, and former captain Robbie Farah returning to the club.

Both Mbye and Farah have been named to play this weekend. Astute roster management is something the Wests Tigers were missing in the past.

But it seems they have entered a new era, and headed by Ivan Cleary, they are able to assure potential signings that the club is stable and will be competitive.

Only eight players have been named to play the Titans in Round 16 who played in the corresponding fixture in 2017; Malakai Watene-Zelezniak, Esan Marsters, Matt Eisenhuth, Kevin Naiqama, Luke Brooks, Michael Chee Kam, Sauaso Sue and Elijah Taylor. It's been one hell of an overhaul.

But what they've managed to cultivate is depth - and luckily, bringing two club legends back to the place they made their debut has helped them incredibly in that area.

Benji Marshall was obviously the first, and now Farah. In an interview with Big League this week, Farah said he would not have considered leaving South Sydney for any other club, and reveals how Marshall actually helped facilitate the move.

Coaches Corner: Kicking in play

Whether you agree with the way Farah departed the club in 2016 or not, it was an emotional time for both the Wests Tigers fans and Robbie himself.

The image of him sitting on the scoreboard at Leichhardt Oval having a few drinks following his farewell will remain a part of rugby league folklore.

A year and a half later and he will make his return, something that he never dreamed he would be able to do, on the very same ground.

He hasn't ruled out a few beverages on the scoreboard afterward, either. So if you do make it to the game on Sunday afternoon, it would be worth sticking around to witness a full-circle moment.

The rugby league gods make the best script writers, don't they?

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