Tigers coach Michael Maguire has swung the axe with a dramatic team overhaul, including a shock switch for star playmaker Luke Brooks.
The Tigers appear to have reached the bottom of the barrel after making the decision to switch star halfback Luke Brooks to a new position.
The star playmaker has been under fire all season as the Tigers slumped to a winless 0-5 start to the year.
Broncos legend Gorden Tallis said during the Tigers’ Round 5 loss to the Sharks that Brooks had “given up”.
Brooks has now been shifted from halfback to five-eight, a position where he will have less responsibility in leading the team and organising the plays they run in attack.
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Brooks’ switch has been accommodated by the return of playmaker Jackson Hastings from a three-game suspension.
Hastings has now been told he will be responsible for leading the team in attack, allowing Brooks to focus more on running the football.
Brooks’ switch came as coach Michael Maguire swung the axe following the 30-4 loss to Cronulla with co-captain Ken Maumalo, Tyrone Peachey, Oliver Gildart and hooker Jacob Liddle all dropped.
Maguire is fighting to save his job while the club’s new head of football Tim Sheens continues to assess if the former premiership-winning coach is the right man to lead the club forward.
Brooks’ move to the No. 6 jumper is just the latest chapter in a rollercoaster saga that has followed his turbulent off-season where he twice asked the club to release him from his contract.
The star halfback earlier this month decided he will see out his contract with his salary reportedly set to rise to a staggering $1.1 million in 2023.
It follows six months of rumours surrounding the 27-year-old with Andrew Johns admitting the Knights tried to tempt him to leave the Tigers.
Brooks also said last year he was interested in working with Johns, who has returned to the Knights as a coaching consultant.
According to recent reports, Brooks remained “unhappy” at the Tigers following their winless start to the season coming off an off-season where he twice formally asked to be released from his contract with the Tigers.
The Tigers recently denied the club was exploring options of cutting Brooks loose if a suitable deal could be struck with a rival club.
With Adam Doueihi expected to miss the first half of the season recovering from an ACL injury, Brooks is the Tigers’ only real option to partner Hastings in the halves.
The Tigers finished the 2021 season sitting 13th on the ladder.
Brooks has struggled in the opening five rounds — but he is far from the only one.
Wests Tigers team lists for Round 6 vs Parramatta Eels
1. Daine Laurie
2. David Nofoaluma
3. James Roberts
4. Luke Garner
5. Starford To’a
6. Luke Brooks
7. Jackson Hastings
8. James Tamou
9. Jake Simpkin
10. Zane Musgrove
11. Kelma Tuilagi
12. Luciano Leilua
13. Joe Ofahengaue
14. Jock Madden
15. Alex Twal
16. Thomas Mikaele
17. Alex Seyfarth
Emergencies: 18. Tyrone Peachey, 19. Jacob Liddle, 20. Oliver Gildart, 21. Ken Maumalo, 22. Tukimihia Simpkins, 23. Junior Tupou, 24. Austin Dias
Originally published as Luke Brooks switch shows Tigers have reached bottom of the barrel