Manly Bank on Menzies for Pivot

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UFO Hunter
Manly's experiment with Jamie Lyon at five-eighth appears over with coach Des Hasler on Wednesday admitting veteran Steve Menzies is the comfortable fit at pivot.

High profile recruit Lyon was given first crack at the No.6 jersey in 2007, but has played his best football once shifted back to his regular centre role.

With last year's pivot Travis Burns still struggling with a back injury, Hasler has turned to the club's longest serving player in Menzies to guide the side towards the finals.

"He is just a natural footballer ... whatever jumper you throw him into he just carries it out," said Hasler.

"He is a player that plays by instinct, he knows the game backwards.

"And the biggest thing with Beaver (Menzies) is the other players are confident when he is there and confident when he is around."

Fullback Brett Stewart believes Menzies is proving himself the ideal five-eighth for the club.

"We're scoring a few points which I think speaks for itself," said Stewart.

"He has a lot of experience so I don't think it really matters where he plays, he always seems to have an impact."

Menzies, however, plays down his role at five-eighth.

Having covered every position in the forward pack and the centres during his 15-year career, moving to playmaker is not something that comes easily to the 33-year-old.

"Brad Fittler and Laurie Daley - they are five-eighths. I'm more of a second receiver," said Menzies.

"It's not my natural game to call plays and have runners and that type of thing.

"It's probably harder for them (outside backs) than myself."

Halfback Matt Orford (thigh) is in doubt for Monday's clash with South Sydney while Burns (back) failed to complete Wednesday's training session.

Michael Monaghan would replace Orford if the captain is ruled out, with Matt Ballin to come into hooker.

The fact Manly possess two clever halfbacks in their side when fully fit means Menzies doesn't need to overplay his hand.

"I don't have to organise kicking or anything like that," he said.

"It really is pretty simple ... I just play it as I would normally play second row.

"I'm just a little bit closer to the football and I get to defend a little bit wider so it's ideal."

Hasler however maintains Lyon could be shifted back into the No.6 jersey, if Kiwi Test centre Steve Matai recovers from a serious neck injury.

"Obviously Steve Matai is a very important part," said Hasler.

"There's no ruling out Jamie Lyon going back to six."

Meanwhile Menzies continues to wait for a one-year contract to sign for next season, with negotiations between the club and his manager ongoing for several weeks.

Manly chief executive Grant Mayer confirmed talks were positive and a meeting would be held next Tuesday in a bid to finalise negotiations.

Menzies is likely to take another pay cut to stay, but with the club vying for an NRL premiership this year and developing well under Hasler he admits it is now tougher than ever to consider heading to England.

"It might not work out, obviously I would not play for anyone else in the NRL so I might look overseas," said Menzies.

"But the preference I suppose is has it's been for the past 100 years and that's to stay at Manly.

"If anything it's tougher to leave now than it would be a few years ago, so there's more reason to stay.

"It'd be great to go out on top but if we made or won a grand final one year you would hope we would be in contention the next year and you would want to hang around and see how we went that year."


Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
What a ****ing legend.

love the guy a perfect ambassador for our club and the game.


There was also a small bit on Sports tonight, Beaver announcing somethingcalled Sea Eagles investments, or home loans or something.

It's what he will do for a career after football, but the awesome thing was that he mentioned that 15-20% of the profits of the company/project (whatever it is) will be pumped back into junior rugby league on the northern beaches.

Menzies. What a man.


I wonder if the club is now regretting letting burns go as we don;t have a 5/8 for next year. Lyon must be left centre and Mattai can play wing of bench.


Menzies passes better than Burns.
Menzies tackles better than Burns.
Menzies (judging from last week and a few over the years) does short grubber attacking kicks better than Burns.
Menzies scores tries better than Burns.

I've never seen Menzies do a bomb so I'll give that to Burns.
Burns does bombs better than Menzies.

Why wouldn't we want Menzies at 5/8 - he looked fluid in attack and seemed to create things when holding the ball. I know it was against the Knights but still.

It's much better Menzies getting his hands on the ball in attack more than doing the hack work of the second row.

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