Hasler backs Cherry-Evans to bounce back

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Manly coach Des Hasler says Queensland's problems stem deeper than their halfback, defending captain Daly Cherry-Evans from "cash for comment" criticism after another State of Origin hiding.

The Sea Eagles captain will welcome an NRL return for the side against Canterbury on Saturday as they incredibly chase a third consecutive 50-plus score.

Cherry-Evans was shattered after Queensland's 26-0 loss at Suncorp Stadium, admitting post-game the Blues appeared more motivated than them to win the series.

Those comments raised the eyebrows of former Maroons half Cooper Cronk and led to a steady stream of criticism this week of the halfback's game and leadership.

Hasler has no time for it though, saying Queensland's injuries woes had exposed a terminal lack of depth.

"Queensland need their best players on the field (to compete)," he said.

"It's sometimes cash for comment there and Cherry came into Origin probably in the top two halfbacks in the competition.

"He was quite emotional and felt it hard to have a loss, but he'll take it on board and respond how he does.

"It won't matter much in the world in which Cherry plays his football."

Tom Trbojevic will also back-up after another dominant effort for NSW.

"They're rugby league players; they love playing footy," Hasler said of Cherry-Evans and Trbojevic.

"It (his sparkling form) has come as no surprise ... he's certainly up there at the forefront, has that entire package, has it all really."

Hasler said Trbojevic's brother Jake (glute) was tracking well and could return next week, meaning he's a chance to feature when the Blues seek a clean sweep on July 14.

Back-rower Josh Schuster (calf) could return in a fortnight while Curtis Sironen (hamstring) remains in rehabilitation.

Hasler's men have shot from 15th spot to sixth in 10 weeks and will be licking their lips against a Bulldogs team ravaged by injury and suspension.

Corey Allan (shoulder) returns on the wing for his first game since round nine and is part of a new-look backline which also features debutant Falakiko Manu in the centres and Kyle Flanagan at five-eighth.

Forward Jackson Topine comes in with Adam Elliott sidelined (cheekbone), while Dylan Napa, Brandon Wakeham, Aaron Schoupp, Corey Waddell and Sione Katoa have all been stood down after they breached biosecurity protocols by visiting a pub in Eastern Sydney on the weekend.

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