‘We love that mentality’: How Hasler can fix Manly
MANLY captain Daly Cherry-Evans says Des Hasler would bring a return to the infamous Sea Eagles siege mentality should the man who handed him his first grade debut return to the club.
Hasler is expected to be announced as Sea Eagles coach early this week which would see him reunite with Cherry-Evans.
Manly's best years come when they are a club under fire. Hasler led the "us versus them" mentality at Manly and Cherry-Evans predicted a return to that mindset should Hasler lead the club.
"Everyone hates Manly," Cherry-Evans said. "Our backs are against the wall and we love playing that style of footy and living by that mentality. Des was a big part of that. I'm sure if he gets the opportunity to come back he will pick up right where he left off.
"With such a rich history with his career at Manly, there is no denying he has the best interests of Manly at heart. It will be interesting to see it all unfold.
"Tim Sheens gave me an Aussie jersey, Mal Meninga Queensland and Dessie club. Those three coaches are people I never forgot. If I was to link up with my first ever first grade coach I'd be all for it."
The Manly halfback is the only remaining Sea Eagles player from their 2011 premiership win which was Hasler's last before dramatically walking out of the club to join Canterbury. While Hasler has had to smoke the peace pipe with owner Scott Penn, Cherry-Evans said there was no need for Hasler to hold a similar discussion with the current squad.
"On behalf of myself no," Cherry-Evans said when quizzed on lingering angst. "I've made it very clear throughout my career that I'll never begrudge anyone for looking after themselves. It's a cruel game we play and job security is certainly a thing that is very rare. For people to look after their own future is not a problem with me."
Hasler might not be the only Sea Eagle to make a return with famed strength and conditioning coach Don Singe linked to the vacant position. Despite growing speculation, Hasler's return is imminent, Cherry-Evans said he had no contact with the club.
"I always say you guys will know before me," Cherry-Evans said. "I honestly haven't heard anything from home. I don't know what's going on back there.
"Whoever the club decides to pick I'll make sure I dive right into it and enjoy whoever it is. I have no problem with the process the club is going through to find a new coach. I'm looking forward to whatever unfolds. If that is Des, we have a bit of history there. That would be exciting to link up with the person that gave me my first grade opportunity.
"That's not my decision. That's for the owners to worry about."
Meanwhile, Cherry-Evans had a mixed return to Test football after playing for Australia for the first time since 2014. Cherry-Evans last Test also coincided with the final time the Kiwis had beaten Australia before Saturday night's two point loss.
"We were our own worst enemy," Cherry-Evans said. "We dropped a lot of ball and gave a good Kiwi side lots of ball and they took full advantage of that."