Wests Tigers back-rower Elijah Taylor will face off against his former Warriors team-mates tomorrow but his return to Mt Smart Stadium could be one of his final games in the NRL as he ponders a switch to rugby next season.
Taylor has been in terrific form since joining Tigers after being released from Penrith mid-season but is off contract at the end of this year.
The 26-year-old is eager to remain at the joint venture club but a switch to rugby is an option and he would also consider a return to the Warriors.
The former Junior Warriors captain made his NRL debut in 2011 and enjoyed three seasons in Auckland where he impressed with his tremendous work rate, leadership and high level of professionalism both on and off the park.
His departure at the end of 2013 rankles the club's fans who welcome him on any return visit to Mt Smart no matter what club he is representing.
"I would consider it but, being real, there's probably no vacant positions there," said Taylor. "There's a pretty solid back-row there full of experience. Some clubs would love to have [Simon] Mannering, [Ryan] Hoffman and [Bodene] Thompson and they're all playing very well.
"Rugby is a legitimate option but I hope I can stay here at the Tigers."
He remained tight-lipped about whether Super Rugby clubs had come knocking and it is unclear whether he might consider a stint in the Mitre 10 Cup or look for a more lucrative opportunity overseas.
Taylor grew up playing rugby and played in representative age-group sides in Taranaki, Northland and Auckland. Earlier this year he contemplated a return to the 15-man code after being relegated to the Panthers NSW Cup side.
Tigers coach Jason Taylor is a frequent target of criticism but Taylor credits him for revitalising his career and helping him to rediscover his best form.
"He's always encouraging and very supportive and all of the boys enjoy that from him," he said. "To get a player that's in reserves and chuck him in your starting 13, that's a massive risk for him. It shows a lot of trust and confidence in me to get the job done and that's what I've really been encouraged by."
Warriors recruitment manager and Taylor's former under-20s coach Tony Iro confirmed the club was not in a position to offer him a contract but said he would be a valuable acquisition to any team in either oval ball code.
"There are players who add value to your organisation and he's one of those guys," said Iro. "He's a quality kid and in my eyes league is his game but he'd be valuable in any sport that he tries his hand at."