Anthony Seibold's telling comment that spells bad news for Daly Cherry-Evans' 'heir apparent'

Many NRL fans thought Jamie Humphreys would have been picked in the Sea Eagles' clash with Souths.

It's the question that's been driving Manly fans nuts all year: When is Jamie Humphreys going to be given a start in the NRL? Heralded as the heir apparent to Daly Cherry-Evans, Humphreys is yet to be used in the top grade.

And it looks like he never will – at least, not in maroon and white. He was surprisingly left out of a Manly side missing 10 frontline players, including Origin-tied Cherry-Evans, in the dreadful 14-0 loss to South Sydney last Saturday night.

After scoring a try, setting up two and kicking six goals in the Sea Eagles' NSW Cup win over the Bunnies, Humphreys was a spectator as winger Tommy Talau was moved into the halves to partner Luke Brooks. In a bludger of a game, an out-of-synch Manly failed to score against an equally undermanned South Sydney in wet conditions.

Anthony Seibold, Jamie Humphreys and Daly Cherry-Evans.
Manly have clearly moved away from the idea that Jamie Humphreys is Daly Cherry-Evans' heir apparent. Image: Getty

Speaking on NRL360, host and Bulldogs premiership-winner Braith Anasta declared: "The Manly Sea Eagles were horrific. Their attack was diabolical. They kept going sideways, throwing block plays, they weren’t direct, they weren’t threatening, they didn’t change, they didn’t look what was in front of them and evolve or try and create different scenarios or situations."

Humphreys is off contract at the end of the season amid speculation he may be forced to move to chase his NRL dream. Although nothing has been confirmed officially, South Sydney are understood to have landed the 22-year-old from next season.

The Sea Eagles see Humphreys more as a hooker than a halfback and started that transition earlier this season before going cold on the idea. The fact he wasn’t used anywhere against the Rabbitohs was telling.

Jamie Humphreys, pictured here in action for Manly in a trial-game.
Jamie Humphreys (second from left) in action for Manly in a trial-game earlier in 2024. Image: Getty


The club is remaining tight-lipped about Humphreys' future but coach Anthony Seibold did address the lack of cohesion in his halves during the loss to Souths. "We had no one else…and that's not being disrespectful to anyone," he said.

"Jakey Arthur, who we had planned to play during this period, has got a stress fracture in his foot so is out for four months, and Brandon Wakeham was playing lower grades earlier in the year so we had a bit of coverage, we thought, for this time of the year. But unfortunately, it wasn't to be. Cohesion was always going to be down."

Tommy Talau at halfback against South Sydney.
Manly used Tommy Talau at halfback against Souths. (AAP Image/James Gourley)

Before the start of the current season, Humphreys spoke of his plans to break into the NRL. He told the Manly media team: "I’m really optimistic about what 2024 holds for me. I’ve put a lot of things in place at the back end of last year and in the off-season, and I’ve had a really strong pre-season.

"I feel as though there is a lot of opportunity there for me this year. My biggest goal is definitely NRL. I just don’t want to make my debut, I want to stay in that team and I want to make an impact. I want to be able to bring my point of difference to the team."