DCE ready for Warriors in chilly Christchurch
The current chilly conditions in Christchurch will play a part in Manly's game plan on Saturday according to Captain Daly Cherry-Evans.
After arriving in Christchurch on Tuesday, the Sea Eagles trained in just four degrees today at the home of the Canterbury Crusaders Rugby Club ahead of their home game against the Warriors at
AMI Stadium. The forecast for game day is a minimum of eight degrees with a maximum of 14.
Cherry-Evans said the players received a shock to the system when they hit the field.
"It was still a pretty hard session considering how freezing cold the hands were,'' he said.
"We are definitely going to have to take into account what the weather conditions are going to be like on Saturday. We certainly feel we have got a side that can change around as to how we play depending on the weather."
Cherry-Evans said the Sea Eagles were expecting Warriors half-back Shaun Johnson to make his return from an ankle injury in what would be his 150th NRL game.
"He is obviously a big part of what the Warriors do when he is in the side,'' Cherry-Evans said.
"We will be on high alert when he has the ball but we are certainly making sure that we are not just zeroing in on Shaun Johnson or else we will leave 12 other blokes to spare.
"We got to see firsthand (last year) the result of Blake Green and his steady head out there.
"He is doing a fantastic job for the Warriors and is also one of the players we have to be careful of."
The Manly captain said he has enjoyed the battles with Johnson.
"We have played footy against each other for eight years now. At the moment, it is tipped in my favour in regards to results but that is certainly not a reflection of how Shaun played during that period,'' Cherry-Evans added.
"He is always a strike player for the Warriors. We are always on red alert when he has got the ball in his hands. Shaun is a fantastic player and I really enjoy coming up against him.
"You get to see firsthand what he is all about and in some games, it is a pretty scary prospect."
Cherry-Evans said the season was far from over despite the Sea Eagles having won only four games heading into round 14.
"We've still got plenty of hope and time left to accomplish what we are trying to do which is play finals football,'' Cherry-Evans said.
"Although the task in hand might be difficult in a lot of people's eyes, the people that are important to us in (terms of) opinions still understand that we still have got plenty of time left."
Cherry-Evans also stressed that he has not given up hope of being selected in the Queensland Origin side after being overlooked for Game One.
"Playing Origin is definitely a desire but I wouldn't say it is the be all and end all,'' he said.
"If you are throwing all your eggs into the basket to put your hopes and dreams on a side, you are probably selling yourself short to what really is in hand.
"At the moment, it is not happening, so I just need to make sure that I play good footy for Manly."