Wests Tigers hooker Robbie Farah says his side won't be overawed by the emotion of what is expected to be a packed Leichhardt Oval this Saturday afternoon when they take on the St. George-Illawarra Dragons for their Round 23 clash.
With four wins from their past five games, Ivan Cleary's side have roared back in to finals contention as they find themselves just two points off the top eight with three games remaining in the season — starting with a crucial home game against a St. George-Illawarra side in somewhat of a free-fall over the past month.
Farah said that while Saturday's game was going to be an emotional one and certainly a big occasion, it wouldn't be getting the better of his side's focus as they prepare for a high-quality Dragons outfit.
"Of course it's exciting to have kept our finals hopes alive," he said.
"But while it's a big game, it's no bigger than any of the other games we've had lately.
"I think it'll be really tough on Saturday; the Dragons will obviously be looking to turn things around.
"They've had a tough month but, you know, they're a quality team. They are full of representative players, Origin players and internationals — we played them a month ago and they were sitting on top of the table.
"Whilst they've had a few tough weeks, they're still one of the best teams in the competition.
"They don't go out there to lose or choke, and they're still a quality team," he added.
"They're in a better position than us at the moment and I'd happily swap where they're at for where we're at. They're fourth or fifth and still fighting for a top four spot and still be a chance to win the Grand Final.
"I think everyone is writing them off a bit too soon, if you ask me."
After coming in just days before the June 30 deadline, both Farah and Moses Mbye have sparked Wests Tigers back in to the finals conversation — something which seemed unlikely following a tough run of form that saw the side win just two games between their Round 6 win over Manly and the Round 17 bye.
However, the Life Member was adamant that the return to form wasn't simply the arrival of the two players, but more a return to the form and discipline that had marked the side's brilliant first six weeks.
"I don't think it's about me coming back, it's been a collective effort," Farah enthused.
"Right from the start of the year, the boys did an outstanding job in the way they started the season.
"There was a bit of a lull through the middle of the season, but we've picked up again — the addition of myself and Moses [Mbye] in key positions, I'd like to think that's helped us across the board.
"I think Moses in particular has been outstanding since he's come here.
"The boys have done a great job all season and we find ourselves in the position we do because of that."
See what Robbie Farah had to say in full about this week's game in the video above!
Mbye try named top play from Round 22