AAP Rugby

DCE charm offensive continues at Qld camp

By AAP Newswire

Suddenly, everybody loves Daly in the Queensland's State of Origin camp.

Even the man who took away his Queensland No.7 jersey, Ben Hunt.

Daly Cherry-Evans' charm offensive launched at the Maroons' game three camp on the Gold Coast shows no sign of abating as the misunderstood playmaker tries to make his Queensland return count.

After winning over media upon his arrival, a relaxed and happy Cherry-Evans took total control of the Maroons' first training session on Thursday as Queensland embraced the polarising halfback.

Not everyone is happy that Cherry-Evans will end three years in the Origin wilderness when he runs out in the No.7 jersey in Wednesday's dead rubber in Brisbane.

Irate fans still dirty over Cherry-Evans' infamous 2015 Gold Coast Titans backflip vented on the Queensland Rugby League's Facebook page, bagging his return and describing the halfback as an "egomaniac".

But clearly the Manly skipper has been welcomed back by the Maroons squad following years of rumours he had fallen out with Queensland.

"He's obviously played a few Origins in the past, he's played in big games, grand finals, played for Australia - he's a very good leader out there," Maroons winger Valentine Holmes said after training.

"He is the talker and Munny (five-eighth Cameron Munster) is the guy who sort of runs off the cuff."

Stand-in skipper Billy Slater set the tone when he threw out the welcome mat from the outset.

"He has worked really hard to get back into this team. Sometimes it can evade you for a long period of time," Slater said ahead of his 31st and final Origin.

"He has done a great job coming off the bench (for Queensland in past) and now he gets the opportunity to start at halfback.

"It is a good fit with Cameron Munster being a running five-eighth."

A beaming Cherry-Evans was clearly flattered by Slater's unprompted "blessing".

"That's really nice. I certainly have a lot of respect for our captain and what he has been able to achieve in the game especially at Origin level - it's great to get his blessing," he said.

"It's certainly been a long road but it has certainly been worth the fight, that's for sure.

"Now it's up to me to reward that (selectors') decision, go out there and lead this team around."

Even Hunt backed Cherry-Evans despite being demoted to the Maroons bench by the Sea Eagles halfback's return.

"He's a good fella. He's come in and he's happy. He's copped a fair bit of flack over the years but we are happy to have him here," he said.