A talented utility back with blinding pace from Innisfail in North Queensland he came to Manly in 1985 in the middle of a rebuilding period for the club. He was known as "Rowdy" due to his reserved off field manner.
His exceptional ability soon had him in Bob Fultons first grade side on the wing and he immediately made an impact as a try scoring specialist. One of the sides Achilles heal at the time was lack of a quality fullback, especially after the retirement of Marty Gurr.
Dale was moved to the fullback position and he soon found a permanent place in the side. During the golden 1987 season Shearer thrilled the Brookvale crowds with his incisive bursts, long distance tries and sturdy defence. For those young punters out there Brett Stewart is almost a carbon copy of the Dale Shearer in 1987.
His combination with Cliff Lyons and Michael OConnor took Manly to premiership glory in 1987, it was Dale who cross kicked to OConnor for the try which sealed the Grand Final at the SCG.
In the after glow of the premiership victory the club seemed content as they had finally found an able fullback replacement for the great Graham Eadie who had retired in 1983.
However as a result of a cowardly elbow to his jaw by Eastern Suburbs player David French at the SFS early in 1988, Dale Shearer career at Manly slowly started to unravel. Shearer spent months on the sideline with a broken jaw and his confidence was shattered, while French received a 12 week suspension for one of the lowest acts in football.
By 1989, Shearer seemed to lose his spirit, there were some allegations of off field misdemeanours and a run in with the law. This season was a water shed year for the club rumours about unhappy players led then CEO Doug Daley to call a mass meeting of players at a training session at North Head. Doug offered any disgruntled players an immediate release, but there was no movement at the station, everybody confirmed they were happy and club got on the with the job of winning footy games.
However a few weeks later, Shearer decided he actually did want out as he had received an offer to play in Brisbane for the Broncos. The club refused as they said he should have taken up the offer when it was first on the table. Dales mood went from bad to worse for the remainder of the season and as a result a number of lack lustre efforts followed.
He left at the end of 1989 however his career never really hit the lofty heights again of 1987 he actually seem like a lost spirit as he moved from the Broncos to the Crushers, Gold Coast and even back to Sydney with the Roosters before retiring.
Dale can claim to be one of the most hated ex Manly playersâ€? in history as when he returned to Brookvale Oval with opposition sides he was roundly booed and jeered by the crowd. However despite the acrimonious ending to his Manly years, I believe we should remembered for the brilliance he displayed in the Maroon and White rather than the final sad ending to his time at the Eagles.
This brilliance lead to an unbelievable representative career where Dale played in a massive 21 Origin games for Queensland and 20 tests for Australia. I believe he still hold the State of Origin try scoring record.
During his 5 seasons at Manly, Dale played 86 games scoring 45 tries, kicked 5 goals and 1 field goal. It is understood that Dale is still playing footy in country Queensland. Dale Shearer - a misunderstood Sea Eagle?