‘I’m hopeful’: Cherry-Evans keeps Origin dream alive
DALY Cherry-Evans refuses to concede 2018 is his final roll of the dice for Queensland and that his State of Origin career will be dead and buried if his name isn't read out when the Maroons team is named next week.
The Manly halfback is considered to be out of the running for a Maroons recall with rival playmakers Ben Hunt, Michael Morgan and Cameron Munster entrenched in Kevin Walters's set up.
The Sea Eagles premiership winner made the last of his six Origin appearances in 2015, mainly being used as an interchange player.
However, Cherry-Evans said this year is not a now-or-never proposition when it comes to his Origin chances.
"I was hopeful last year, I'm hopeful this year and if I don't get picked I'll be hopeful next year," he said.
"It certainly wouldn't dishearten me if I wasn't picked this year.
"I'd like to think I'm a little more resilient than that." Persistent rumours that he was offside with certain players in the Maroons squad have dogged Cherry-Evans for years.
It was widely credited as the reason for him being overlooked last year as the Maroons' halves stocks were battered by injury.
Even with Johnathan Thurston and Cooper Cronk retiring from representative football, he still appears to be well down the pecking order.
The Maroons are in need of a kicker with Cameron Smith joining Thurston in stepping down from state and national duties - a roll Cherry-Evans could fill given he kicks for his club.
"I'm not pleading right here right now," Cherry-Evans said.
"We've got one more game before selections are made.
"If I can go out there and off the back of the last two weeks play well again, I know it's not going to do my chances any harm.
"The selectors and Kevvie are watching every game so I don't have to sit here and plead why I should be there.
"If they're liking what they're seeing they'll pick me next week."