Halfback Cherry ripe as a potential NRL champion Steve Ricketts 6 July 2010 The Courier-Mail Copyright 2010 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved ``BOY. Your halfback is a good player.'' With those words Queensland State of Origin coach Mal Meninga summed up the potential of State Residents skipper Daly Cherry-Evans (right) following an opposed training session at Camp Maroon at Coolum on Sunday. Meninga's unsolicited remarks to Residents coach Brandon Costin came as a result of Cherry-Evans' slick work with the ball and organisational skills against the elite Maroons. Meninga is not alone when it comes to his assessment of the 21-year-old Redcliffe product, who recently penned a three-year deal with Manly in the NRL. The Sea Eagles view Cherry-Evans as the likely replacement for No.7, Trent Hodkinson, who has signed with the Bulldogs for 2011. Hodkinson, a western Sydney product, was understudy to Matt Orford last year, but did not get a run in the NRL and was a guiding force in Sunshine Coast's historic Queensland Cup premiership win. Costin, who also coaches Cherry-Evans at Queensland Cup level with Sunshine Coast, said the 21-year-old was on the verge of playing NRL. ``I wouldn't put it past Daly to get a call-up to the NRL this year,'' Costin said. ``I think it's going to happen soon rather than later. ``He is a better player than Trent was at the same time last year and Mal (Meninga) and (former Queensland halfback) Allan Langer were impressed with him yesterday. ``They both gave him a wrap. The nicest thing I can say about Daly is that he is very respectful. He listens and takes things on board.'' Queensland Residents play their NSW counterparts in the main curtain-raiser in Sydney tomorrow night with former star halfback Jason Taylor as Blues coach.