It stuck out like a sore thumb – a mostly empty table in an otherwise full room of revellers at Monday night’s Brad Fittler Medal.
The table had been reserved for the Blues assistant coaching staff from this year’s series, but only four members from sacked coach Laurie Daley’s crew bothered to show up.
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His right hand men, John Cartwright and Matt Parish, were both notable absences, as was selection advisor Peter Sterling.
Medical staff Liz Street, Travis Touma and Dr Nathan Gibbs were also no-shows.
All have been mainstays of Daley’s off field team over the past five years.
We can’t positively say whether they all stayed away in support of their old boss, but some definitely did.
With Fittler a strong chance to replace Daley next year, there will need to be some careful diplomacy within the NSWRL to repair the rift.
In the meantime Daley has been mentioned as a coaching candidate for the Titans.
Sources close to him say it won’t happen, because he’ll want to remain in Sydney next year when his daughter completes her HSC.