I wish... I hadn't said it: Tahu - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

I wish... I hadn't said it: Tahu

By David Beniuk 17/09/2007 06:11:59 PM Comments (0)

Rugby union-bound Parramatta star Timana Tahu may have answered "I wish" when asked if he'd like to stay in the NRL, but his only wish now is he hadn't said anything.

Asked immediately after the Eels' 25-6 semi-final win over the Bulldogs on Saturday night if he now felt like staying, Tahu sent shivers all the way to the Rugby World Cup in France with his off-the-cuff response.

"I didn't realise it was that big of a thing," Tahu told AAP on Monday.

"I'm not sad about leaving rugby league, I really want to go.

"I was the one who approached rugby union first and ... I'm happy with my decision and I'm looking forward to going to rugby union."

Tahu said he hadn't been slapped over the wrist by rugby officials over the remark.

"I haven't talked to any of them but I get a few gee-ups from the (Parramatta) boys," he said.

"It wasn't a thing to say I regret leaving rugby league, I was still coming off a high of winning that game and I sort of got stumped there a little bit."

But the in-form 26-year-old, who has achieved everything a player can in rugby league, is desperate to go out a winner before linking with the NSW Waratahs.

"Hopefully I can go out on a high. I treat every game as a grand final at the moment," he said.

As well as five Test matches and 11 State of Origin games for NSW, Tahu has the 2001 NRL premiership with Newcastle in his resume, a feat he shares with Eels mentor Michael Hagan who took the Knights to a grand final win in his first year as a top grade coach.

Ironically, Tahu's decision to leave the Knights in 2005 was largely because Hagan preferred him on the wing rather than in his favoured position of centre.

"It's probably the main reason why I did leave Newcastle because I wanted to play in the centres and it was hard at that time, Mark Hughes and Matt Gidley were playing in the centres," Tahu said.

"I had no regrets leaving Newcastle and I think it's turned out probably the better for me."

And he can see the parallels between 2001 and 2007.

"I was thinking last week, we might be in the grand final again, two Newcastle blokes," he said of his partnership with Hagan.

"He's still the same bloke, still laid back and still an approachable person you can go to if you need anything.

"The team's probably a little bit different, probably a lot more young faces.

"We had a lot of rep players and a lot of people that were retiring in that 2001 grand final, so I think that there was more of an urge at that time.

"But I think there's the same feeling again, there's still a few old faces in our side."

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