Manly Sea Eagles
From the ashes
Sure, Manly was hit by the NRL with a breach notice over salary cap irregularities towards the end of last year, and Brookvale Oval is falling apart around them, but like generations of Sea Eagles have done so successfully over the years, this current crop will need to block all that frontoffice drama out and get on with the job.
Speaking of the on-field department, coach Trent Barrett isn’t without his own challenges, as he looks to find a new halves partner for superstar Daly Cherry-Evans following the departure Blake Green to the Warriors. He seems to have secured an able one in potential superstar Lachlan Croker, an injury-plagued youngster who finally gets his shot in the top grade following a few unlucky years down at the Raiders. Croker will prove more than capable if Manly misses out on luring Trent Hodkinson due to the NRL stepping in over those cap queries.
There’s been a key personnel update in the forwards at Manly too, with former Dragons backrower Joel Thompson to provide the Eagles with plenty of muscle up front in 2018. They were missing this in spades last year, following the injury to Curtis Sironen just as he was beginning to hit the form of his career, and the departure mid-season of former Maroons hardman Nate Myles to the Storm.
Headline you’ll see: “It’s just a flesh wound: Barrett”