The Wests Tigers have recently added to their list of impressive young talent with the immediate signing of 2018 Penrith SG ball and under 18’s NSW captain Shawn Blore.
This signing is another win for Michael Maguire, Adam Hartigan (pictured above with the new Wests Tigers recruit) and the rest of the Wests Tigers recruitment team and should give fans great confidence moving forward.
Blore’s resume as a junior is impressive, winning SG ball and national titles in 2018 with Penrith and representing his State at under 18’s level against a strong Queensland team with players such as David Fifita.
After the SG ball season in 2018, Blore was promoted to Jersey Flegg where he was selected in the Under 20’s Kangaroos team to top off a remarkable season.
In terms of position, Blore plays mostly in the middle of the field at lock but can slot into the second-row position if needed.
If it wasn’t for an ACL injury in 2019, many experts were tipping the NSW captain to make his NRL debut for Penrith.
Blore was also the only player in the emerging NSW team not to have NRL experience so it’s clear he is highly rated.
From what I’ve seen, Tigers fans shouldn’t be surprised if Blore makes his Wests Tigers debut early on in the restarted 2020 NRL season.
The signing of Blore is another indication that the Tigers are building towards long term success with the recruitment of players who have tremendous long-term upsides rather than players that only offer a short term solution, a situation which the club has been guilty of in the past.
The club has signed highly-rated prospects such as Jake Simpkin, Tommy Talau, Jock Madden, Reece Hoffman, William Kei, Stefano Utoikamanu and Etuale Lui to their system which is very pleasing because those players would have had a number of clubs chasing their signatures.
Players such as Blore, Simpkin and especially Utoikamanu are very exciting prospects who are considered some of the best players of their age group and that is why the Tigers recruitment team has done such an impressive job to sign them.
Balmain has also managed to field a very strong SG ball team that went close to being undefeated before the season was postponed which is a testament to the pathways system of the club.
It is pleasing to see that the Tigers recruitment team is building a reputation as a place where young elite talent can develop and achieve goals under a highly respected development coach such as Michael Maguire.
The Club was also able to attract highly rated NRL talent such as Adam Doueihi and Luciano Leilua over the summer which makes me optimistic that the current Wests Tigers administration can finally achieve long term sustained success.
With the signing of elite young prospects along with the arrival of the Tigers new Centre of excellence, the club has an opportunity to become one of the NRL’s most desirable recruitment destinations.
This is a massive contrast compared to just a few seasons ago where it seemed the Tigers couldn’t retain or recruit to compete with the elite teams of the competition.
Wests Tigers fans should sleep well knowing that the club has assembled probably the best Football department I’ve seen from my time as a fan and I can’t wait to see what they do next.