It’s the contract saga which has dulled the sheen of Daly Cherry-Evans’ NRL golden boy image but it seems the playmaker’s potential teammates at Gold Coast are still fans.
The Manly halfback’s reputation, already damaged by his very public contract negotiations, took another hit after rumours last week he was contemplating backing out of his four-year, multi-million dollar deal with the Titans.
Cherry-Evans himself labelled the rumours as untrue on Monday, saying he was disappointed by the way he’d been treated by some sections of the media as the speculation over his future reached fever-pitch over the weekend.
Players at the Titans though say they remain excited about Cherry-Evans’ imminent arrival and have no issue with the Queensland and Australia representative coming to join their club.
“I’m sure the team’s going to love him when he comes up here next year,” winger Anthony Don said.
“We can’t really comment on what’s happening obviously but of course we’d love him up here.”
Drama is the last thing the Titans need, with Don admitting the club’s pre-season scandal, where four current members of the squad were stood down after being charged with cocaine offences, took its toll.
He said it was no coincidence the Titans have been able to notch three wins in the past four matches, including a 32-6 victory over Penrith last weekend, since those players had been restored to first team duties by the club.
Saturday’s win was almost a complete reversal from a 40-0 flogging by the Panthers in Bathurst and Don said the reasons for that change in fortune were obvious.
“Definitely the confidence in the team,” he said.
“A lot of the scandal stuff was happening at that time and the boys were just coming back into the team. They weren’t there that week.
“It was a tough period for the club and we got them on different terms this week. They had a lot of injuries to key players as well, which played a factor.”