SUNSHINE Coast chief Justin Veivers is confident the Sea Eagles will be able to maintain some form of relationship with Manly next season after meeting the Queensland Rugby League yesterday.
Manly-registered player Junior Palau in action for the Sunshine Coast in last year’s Queensland Cup grand final.
Representatives of the 12 Queensland Cup clubs met QRL board members over a number of issues, with dual registration being on the top of the agenda for the Sea Eagles.
As it stands, Manly-contracted players will not be allowed to be dual registered with Sunshine Coast next season after the Australian Rugby League imposed sanctions on the process.
Queensland Cup clubs have been at loggerheads with the QRL over a number of issues, with Souths Logan and Sunshine Coast being most worried about their feeder arrangements with Canberra and Manly respectively.
If the Sydney-based fringe NRL players aren’t able to turn out for Sunshine Coast it will put a strain on the amount of Queensland Cup-quality players available for the Stockland Park-based club next year.
Veivers said the meeting took a step in the right direction in a very slow process.
“We talked around in circles again but there might be some developments in regards to dual registration and the softening of that,” he said.
“There’s a push for that, which is a positive sign, but it has to be played out at the ARL level.
“That’s our main concern, and the lack of support the QRL has given us in the matter. But we’re starting to get some support now, which is good. There was some movement in that regard.”
Without the money flow from a leagues club, Sunshine Coast relies heavily on the backing of Manly financiers and on players like Junior Palau, Vic Mauro and Daly Cherry-Evans, who play regularly on the Coast.
Veivers said the clubs were hoping to come to an agreement where a certain number of players would be registered in the New South Wales Cup and others in the Queensland Cup.
“They’re (Manly) a New South Wales team and we accept they (NSW Rugby League) need to have a strong competition down there, but not at our expense,” he said. “That would be a good outcome and it wouldn’t stop Manly from being involved with us.”