Following a steady start in Wests Tigers colours, speedy centre James Roberts is looking to go up a gear when he plays his first home game at Leichhardt Oval when the team faces the North Queensland Cowboys on Sunday afternoon.
The Wests Tigers recruit — who has played three games for the club in 2021 — has been pleased with his start to the new campaign but is eager to take his game to a new level over the next couple of weeks.
Yet to score a try in 2021, Roberts will be eyeing off his first four-pointer in Round 5 and has called on his team-mates to give him early ball as the ‘Jet’ looks for takeoff.
“I haven’t scored a try so I’m due for one, so hopefully I get one this weekend … hopefully I can get some early ball,” Roberts said.
“I’m enjoying my footy and enjoying where I’m at, at the moment. I’m just taking it week by week.”
Living together and playing on the same right edge of the field, Roberts and winger David Nofoaluma are forming a solid combinational in 2021 — and although they’ve shown a number of positive signs already this season — Roberts said there’s improvement needed.
“He [Nofoaluma] is good for the team and brings good energy ... I’ve been enjoying playing with him. We’re still getting our combinations together and I’m hoping to get a bit more ball,” the centre said.
“He’s been positive because we know the potential we have in the squad and how close we are. We just have to get it right and get some wins on the board.”
Although Wests Tigers have just one win on the board, Roberts said the squad is moving in the right direction.
“We haven’t been able to win as much as we’ve wanted but I feel like we’re getting there,” he said.
“I feel like we lost that game on the weekend [against Parramatta] ourselves … we’re going to improve a lot this weekend.
“We’re slowly coming together as a team as well. I think we’ll do a good job this weekend [against the Cowboys].
“We’re just focussing on ourselves. If we stick to our game plan and play how we train, we’ll get the win on the weekend.
“There’s still a lot of room for improvement. We’re getting used to each other, being a fresh group. But we have no excuses, we need to execute and get a good win.”