Taylor’s rugby league return locked in

 

Titans half Ash Taylor's month from hell is over with the struggling playmaker cleared to return to football by club psychologists.

Taylor will make his Intrust Super Cup debut for Tweed Heads in their clash against the Capras this Saturday in Ilfracombe, the hometown of Cowboys prop Matt Scott.

Taylor hasn't played since June 2 when he dropped a bombshell on the Titans seeking time out to address some mental issues related to some personal and family problems.

Taylor hasn’t played in over a month. AAP Image/Dave Hunt.
Taylor hasn’t played in over a month. AAP Image/Dave Hunt.


The 24-year-old has been back at training with the Titans squad and has been given the green light from specialists to return to playing with a view to eventually returning to the NRL.

Titans Executive Chairman Dennis Watt said the Club was resolute in its support of Taylor, and commended the halfback for setting the example for young men struggling with mental health issues by asking for help when he needed it.

"We will maintain the level of support around Ash," Watt said. "He is doing everything he can, but this is very much a team effort (to support him) as an individual and as a player. He knows we are there in the fight with him."

Watt said the club was hopeful of seeing Taylor back in Titans colours shortly.

"He would certainly be knocking on the door with a strong game this week - if he plays with confidence, which I expect," he said.

"As you know, he has a full array of skills. At his best, there are few playmakers in the game who can actually match it with Ash.

Taylor is one of the Gold Coast’s biggest stars. AAP Image/Dave Hunt.
Taylor is one of the Gold Coast’s biggest stars. AAP Image/Dave Hunt.

"I wouldn't expect anything too spectacular on Day 1. Just so long as he plays confidently and strongly, and is happy with his own performance."

Watt said the Titans fans and the general public needed to share the club's patience with Taylor as he works his way back to the NRL.

"I see even in the AFL there have been a few people there taking time out of the game," Watt said.

"Professional athletes are subjected to enormous pressure these days. The eyes of the world are very much upon them.

"Sometimes when other things aren't going right in your life, the weight of those expectations is magnified.

"I would just ask for patience. Just remember that he is a very decent young man who is giving his best for this club and for this game of ours."



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