Qld see Cherry-Evans as Origin III fixer
Queensland State of Origin coach Kevin Walters (AAP Image/Jono Searle)
It remains to be seen how the Queensland crowd reacts to Daly Cherry-Evans.
But the polarising playmaker has been embraced by the Maroons as their Mr Fixit for next week's State of Origin game three at Suncorp Stadium.
Not only will Cherry-Evans be expected solve Queensland's No.7 dilemma, Maroons coach Kevin Walters reckons the Manly captain will also make halves partner Cameron Munster a better player.
And Cherry-Evans may even take over the crucial goal kicking duties for July 11's dead rubber.
How times have changed.
Cherry-Evans has copped boos at Queensland's spiritual home Suncorp Stadium running out for Manly after his infamous Gold Coast Titans backflip in 2015.
Then there's the persistent rumours that Cherry-Evans endured three years in Origin exile after falling out with the Maroons during his last Queensland stint in 2015.
But it seems all is forgiven after Cherry-Evans answered an SOS to replace Ben Hunt at halfback as Queensland try to avoid the first NSW whitewash since 2000.
"That experience around the halves is something we haven't had in this series," Walters said of the 29-year-old, who has played six Origins.
"He's been knocking on the door for several years now waiting for that elusive opportunity and I feel the time is right for that opportunity.
"I am excited to see what he can do for us."
And it seems Cherry-Evans can do plenty.
Walters believes Cherry-Evans is the man to finally own the Maroons No.7 jersey as Queensland began life without retired greats Cameron Smith, Johnathan Thurston and Cooper Cronk.
Cherry-Evans replaces Hunt at halfback after the St George Illawarra playmaker's much criticised display in Queensland's game two loss that handed NSW their second series win in 13 years.
Walters said Cherry-Evans will also help pivot Munster find another gear.
"DCE can fill those (halfback) shoes. He is captain of Manly and played in a premiership-winning team in the halves," Walters said.
"Cam has done that but he is a different style of player. With the addition of DCE it will help Cameron as well - we should see a more fluent game from Cameron."
Walters revealed Cherry-Evans got the nod over Gold Coast youngster Ash Taylor.
"We did (consider Taylor) but we just felt that Ash wasn't quite ready for the step up to Origin," he said.
"We would like to see a few little improvements around his defensive game and just being in the game.
"That has been the problem since we lost JT (Thurston) and Cronk. They were always in the game - we need DCE to be in the game for every moment."
Walters says Cherry-Evans will also be considered for goal-kicking duties, taking over from Valentine Holmes.
© AAP 2018