Daly Cherry-Evans Re-Signs With Manly On NRL’s Largest Ever Player Contract

Star halfback Daly Cherry-Evans is the NRL‘s million dollar man, after backflipping on a previously agreed deal with the Gold Coast Titans to remain with the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles on a contract that is set to net him somewhere in the vicinity of $10million.

Back on March 6th, Cherry-Evans had agreed in principle to a four-year contract with the Titans. But in the months that ensued, a long and protracted negotiation saga played out, culminating this morning with DCE calling Titans coach Neil Henry at 10am this morning to inform him he would be staying in Sydney.
The Maroons representative signed an open-ended deal – fundamentally similar to the blockbuster contract Sydney Swans superstar Lance Franklin signed – that will effectively make him a Sea Eagle for life. The contract is worth more than $1million per season, and is by far and away the most lucrative player contract in the history of the NRL.
The backflip plays into the NRL’s hugely controversial “Round 13” rule, which prevents any player from lodging a new contract with a rival club until the midpoint of the season – in essence giving current clubs an extended period of time to re-negotiate in the hopes of retaining that player.
But throughout the period of time between agreeing to the Titans contract and this morning, Cherry-Evans remained steadfast with his choice.

“There is a rule in place which gives Manly every opportunity to do what they have to retain me. With the decision, I have nothing to change at the moment.”

“I’m happy with my decision to go to the Gold Coast, and as we know there is a rule in place which allows Manly to have a go at retaining me.”

This morning’s stunning backflip has already been latched onto by the Internet, with DCE’s Wikipedia page ever-so-slightly modified to reflect his new-found economic agility.

But with big money comes big responsibility. Whether the 26 year-old can live up to the expectations a $1million+ per year player carries with him is now a question perhaps even bigger than where his pen would land.

Photo: Brendon Thorne via Getty Images.