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Queensland legend Allan Langer believes Daly Cherry-Evans can be next Maroons great

All has been forgiven for Daly Cherry-Evans, with Allan Langer declaring the once maligned playmaker can be Queensland's next great State of Origin captain.

Halfback Cherry-Evans already has an impressive comeback story after being named the Maroons' 15th skipper for Wednesday's Origin opener.

It marks just his second game back since ending a three year-exile in last year's Origin III following speculation he had fallen out with senior Queensland players.

But former Maroons captain Langer has upped the ante, declaring the classy No.7 is the man to lead Queensland into a new era.

Cherry-Evans takes over the Maroons reins as they not only look to reclaim the Origin title for the first time in 14 years but also start life without their future Immortals.

The Maroons are fielding a new look side on Wednesday night with three debutants after Greg Inglis and Billy Slater joined fellow greats Cameron Smith, Johnathan Thurston and Cooper Cronk in representative retirement.

"Coming back into the side last year he proved to himself what he can do with the Maroons," Langer said of DCE.

"And with his leadership qualities over the years at NRL club Manly, seeing him at camp this week with the young guys, it has been pretty special."

Asked if Cherry-Evans can be Queensland's next great captain, Langer didn't hesitate.

"I think so. It is the start of a new era bringing these young guys into the squad," he said.


"And with him and (back-rower) Matt Gillett pretty well experienced, hopefully he (DCE) will be there for years to come."

Queensland coach Kevin Walters said Cherry-Evans was ready to step up as skipper.

"Last year when he came in for game three I felt an instant connection with him and knew straight away the leadership in him," he said.

"He has been through so much as a player mentally and I feel that has put him in a really good position to bounce back the way he has.

"He's been absolutely outstanding (in camp). We expect our captain to lead us tomorrow night and DCE will deliver.

"He has done it before for us here last year and I have every expectation that he will do it here again (on Wednesday)."

Back in 2015 Cherry-Evans was booed on Queensland's hallowed ground Suncorp Stadium after rumours he had rubbed Maroons the wrong way and an infamous Gold Coast Titans contract backflip.

But Walters said Maroons fans would welcome Cherry-Evans with open arms on Wednesday night.

"They will love DCE. He showed last year what a player he is in that Maroons jersey," he said.

"And now he is a more experienced, settled player. They are going to absolutely love him.

Daly Cherry-Evans of Queensland Source: Getty


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