New Sea Eagles hitman Marty Taupau may have adjusted his training to be ready for the new reduced interchange rules but happily declares he'll be ready to bring the aggression back to the northern beaches.
Manly's forward pack, criticised somewhat in 2015, has been bolstered by internationals Nate Myles, Lewis Brown and Taupau, among others, but any Manly fans who were watching the NRL All Stars v Indigenous All Stars go at it in the pre-season will be salivating about what 'Kapow' will bring to the northern beaches this year after his giant fend caused chaos.
Taupau knows there will be expectations that the incoming trio of internationals will help lift the standards of the Sea Eagles forward pack, along with the return from injury of Brenton Lawrence and emergence of Jake Trbojevic.
"I'm more than happy to contribute and bring that brute force back," Taupau said.
"[Manly has] been a very successful club for the last decade so it would be great to get them back up there in the finals."
Taupau was released early from his Wests Tigers contract in a boon for incoming coach Trent Barrett, and said his decision to join the Sea Eagles was purely about personal opportunity.
"Not only for myself as a footballer but as a person off the field. My family, I took everything into account and I felt like it was the right time. Just to better myself in terms of my branding, my image and the people that are within this organisation at Manly. I just thought it would be great to be a part of it."
The club has more than met his expectations so far and he is enjoying his footy now more than ever.
He denied either Barrett nor club legend Bob Fulton, who is widely credited with reversing the side's fortunes (particularly at the recruitment table) had needed to sell the club to him as some time to reflect while in the UK with the Kiwi Test side at the end of last season gave him a chance to reflect on his future.
"It wasn't either of them. It was just myself. It took a long time, obviously I was over in the English tour with the Kiwis so that gave me some time just to think about everything and take it into account."
He added that despite coming in slightly later than the other new recruits, and the radically overhauled playing roster, everyone had gelled well.
"Everyone gets along with everyone. Everyone respects each other's space and their values. I think the last few weeks that we've trained together you can see it and it's running really smoothly," he said.
This article first appeared on nrl.com
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