Well well well...What a start!
What does everything think of the season so far?
Although I don't follow Manly in the least, I'm glad Daly Cherry-Evans hasn't succumbed to second year syndrome, however it seems his continued success has attracted attention from other clubs as well as increasing his aspirations. This is quite apparent in the fact that he is seeking an early release from Manly.
I can certainly see where he is coming from though - His ability and performances compared to his pay packet is chalk and cheese. It's abysmal. Cherry-Evans is on $85 000 a year!!! WTF??!!! There are plenty of players in Toyota Cup who are on more than that and his contract stipulates a meagre $125 000 for next year. Although a contract is a contract, surely Manly is smart enough to realise if they don't reward him with an early release and attempt to resign him at a much higher rate, they'll lose him without a doubt.
Look at Sandow - $550 000 per year. Cherry-Evans has performed better over the past 12 months than Sandow so surely he would be worth between $350 000 and $450 000 on the open market.
If he signs with another team for next season, I wouldn't be at all surprised if it was for the Broncos as he is a Queenslander and they will be seeking a big name signing with the departure of Petero. I have previously mentioned the off-contract Thurston will be targeted, however a young Cherry-Evans would certainly fit in with the youthful dynamic of Brisbane.
The bulldogs have been the surprise packet so far with the likes of Josh Morris finally playing to their potential. He has of course been helped with strong performances from his team mates. I can't see the bulldogs staying top of the table though. Once they come up against Melbourne, Manly, Brisbane and co., they will be thrown back to the RSPCA.
I've been hugely disappointed by the Newcastle Knights. Hell, I had Darius Boyd in my NRL Dream Team but he's done sweet **** all. Their chances certainly haven't been increased with Naiqama injuring his knee in the first half against the Broncos and whenever Gidley isn't playing their chances of winning plummet to about 0.0172% unless of course they're playing at home against Canberra. With Naiqama out for a possible 6 week stint and Gidley still out for atleast another 2 weeks and playing away against the Bulldogs and Storm, I feel they'll stay on 2 competition points for a while yet.
Pharrrrk...plenty more to say but I have to head out! Let the banter begin!