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Wests Tigers halfback Luke Brooks.

It's another new era for the Wests Tigers, with Ivan Cleary off the bus and former premiership-winning Rabbitohs coach Michael Maguire in charge for the new campaign.

The evergreen Robbie Farah was the club's best Fantasy performer last year but here are three players who could make their mark in 2019.

Ryan Matterson

A strong performer for the Roosters last season and a quality buy for the Wests Tigers, Matterson looms as a possible keeper if he holds down an 80-minute role in the second row all year as expected.

He played the bulk of last year in the starting pack for the premiers but was used off the bench or as a replacement five-eighth for the last six weeks of the regular season. His Fantasy scores took a hit in that time.

That brought his season average down to 46 and his 2019 starting price has dipped to match it, even though he scored 51 points a game when starting in the forward pack and 53.5 when playing the full 80 as a second rower.

Esan Marsters

The toughest place to find consistent scorers in NRL Fantasy is in the centres, where players don't get the reliable tackle counts of forwards or the run metres of wingers and fullbacks.

That makes a player like Marsters a hugely valuable rarity – someone who you can trust to get you around 40 points each week at centre.

Esan Marsters celebrates a try for Wests Tigers.
Esan Marsters celebrates a try for Wests Tigers. ©Nathan Hopkins/NRL Photos

A superb defender and tackle-busting ball-runner who also kicks goals and get his fair share of offloads away, Marsters averaged 41 points a game last season despite scoring only three tries all year.

That gives him a little upside if the Tigers can rejuvenate their attack under Kiwis mentor Michael Maguire, and at worst it's hard to see him going backwards in 2019.

Luke Brooks

Brooks was seen as a potential future star since his first full NRL season in 2014, and he took a big leap towards fulfilling that potential in 2018.

The Dally M Halfback of the Year, Brooks pushed his average Fantasy score past 40 points a game for the first time – a four-point jump from 2017 and a 10-point increase on his 2016 numbers.

The Tigers No.7 ran the ball and offloaded more than ever, he also made the most tackles of his career and his forced drop-outs jumped from eight the previous year to 22. That was good enough for third best in the NRL.

He'd need to step up another level to be considered a Fantasy keeper, but if Michael Maguire can kick-start the Tigers' attack (they ranked 15th in points scored in 2018) Brooks should benefit from increases in assist numbers at the very least.

Wests Tigers player prices & positions

Robbie Farah $826,000, HOK
Ryan Matterson $681,000, 2RF
Matthew Eisenhuth $636,000, FRF, 2RF
Esan Marsters $617,000, CTR
Moses Mbye $594,000, WFB, HLF
Luke Brooks $592,000, HLF
Elijah Taylor $572,000, 2RF, HOK
Alex Twal $551,000, FRF, 2RF
David Nofoaluma $521,000, WFB
Chris Lawrence $503,000, 2RF
Michael Chee-Kam $501,000, 2RF, CTR
Ben Matulino $485,000, FRF
Paul Momirovski $472,000, CTR
Corey Thompson $469,000, WFB
Robbie Rochow $467,000, 2RF, FRF
Benji Marshall $459,000, HLF
Mahe Fonua $452,000, WFB, CTR
Josh Reynolds $450,000, HLF
Russell Packer $419,000, FRF
Josh Aloiai $352,000, 2RF
Luke Garner $340,000, 2RF
Zane Musgrove $287,000, FRF
Jacob Liddle $261,000, HOK
Tyson Gamble $255,000, HLF
Chris McQueen $228,000, 2RF
Dylan Smith $212,000, WFB
Oliver Clark $212,000, FRF
Sam McIntyre $212,000, 2RF, CTR
Thomas Mikaele $212,000, FRF

Five key matchups of the Tigers' 2019 draw

NRL Fantasy kicks off on January 30. Make sure you are prepared by creating an official NRL account (if you haven't already).

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