Sunday, October 2, 2011

Manly Sea Eagles captain Jamie Lyon rules himself out of Four Nations tour Herald Sun

Hasler was already a Manly icon. Last night he became a legend as he led the club to its eighth premiership and second under his tenure. What next? Hasler has another year remaining on his contract but has been the subject of a massive offer from the Bulldogs.

After last night's game he indicated he would honour his contract and stay for next season. Beyond that, who knows? The Sea Eagles are locked in talks with their coach and insist he is going nowhere. The Bulldogs have a big fat cheque that says otherwise.

"I haven't given it a thought to tell you the truth. The only thing I have been concentrating on is this moment, this grand final," Hasler said. "I am at Manly for next season. Now that this grand final is over we will continue some discussions."

Given what happened at ANZ Stadium, Manly would be well advised to shell out whatever it takes to keep its coach. Hasler is worth every cent. Wayne Bennett may be the game's reigning super-coach but Hasler is closing fast.

"We were in a shambles before he turned up," backrower Anthony Watmough said.

"This club wouldn't be the same without him. I don't really know much about the coaches history at Manly, but he has to be one of the greatest.

"He has done such a great job over the years he has been here. How could you walk away from something you built? Give him $2 million a year."

Hasler won his first premiership in 2008, re-built his team and won a second only three years later. He did it with a new set of halves, two 20-somethings who were among the club's best performers last night.

"Tim Sheens knows I don't want to play so I don't think he'd pick people that don't want to be here. They have Chris Lawrence, Michael Jennings, Willie Tonga, Brent Tate, plenty of other centres who want to be there. I am looking forward to a rest."

After producing his best grand final display with a performance that included seven tackle busts, Lyon revealed he had played most of the year with a series of niggling injuries.

"It is just great to get the win," Lyon said.

"And I am glad it is over. I have had a few bumps and bruises and have been carrying a few injuries. I am definitely glad it is all over."

Lyon said he was feeling "old" but was adamant he had at least another two years of football to play. He is contracted with the Sea Eagles until the end of 2013.

"Yeah, I am feeling it in my body," he said.

"But I have another two years after this year and I am hopeful I will get through."

Lyon was happy with his display, leading the way as the Sea Eagles fought off a spirited charge home from the Warriors. He made 13 runs for 88m, while making 13 tackles in a five star performance.

"I have some bad grand final memories," he said.

"2001 (when he played for the Eels against the Knights) was bad but in 2007 I had a shocker. It took me a couple of months to get over that and even my missus said I was terrible so it scared me a bit."

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