Daly Cherry-Evans has backed his new Manly halves partner Dylan Walker to make a big playmaking impression on the NRL in 2016.
Former South Sydney centre Walker replaces Parramatta’s Kieran Foran in the five-eighth slot at Brookvale, after an off season blighted by his prescription drug overdose.
But Walker spent much of his junior playing days at five-eighth and Cherry-Evans believes he is ready to make a fist of the high-pressure spot this season.
“I’m really excited about him getting the ball in his hands regularly,” Cherry-Evans said.
“There is no doubt that he has been a strike weapon for Souths in previous years, but now for us he is getting the ball in his hands regularly and he is going to cause some real headaches for sides moving forward.”
“I’m really looking forward to getting out there and playing some football with Dylan.”
Cherry-Evans and Walker are set to have their first official hitout together in Manly’s final trial against Ipswich Jets at Pittwater Park on Saturday.
The former Queensland playmaker has undergone off season surgery on a troublesome shoulder. But he said that hasn’t affected his ability to work up a combination in the halves with Walker.
“I’m feeling fit and healthy for the season ahead,” Cherry-Evans said.
“I’m pretty confident that I’m back to where I was pre the injury.
“It has been really good with Dylan, I have been able to train for much of the pre-season and have been able to build that combination with him.
“I’m really enjoying the combination we have put together.”
Cherry-Evans promised that fans will see “a very fast up-tempo style of rugby league” under new coach Trent Barrett in 2016.