Manly superstar’s absence turbo charges Elliot’s career

Searching for a fresh start, he made a move north and played for the Titans just three times in 2018, never stepping into the winners’ circle.

Desperate to prove he could make the grade, Elliot flew across the world at the end of last season to take part in England’s tier-two competition, The Championship.


That deal then fell over and Des Hasler came calling.

Some may have been intimidated by the task in trying to fill the hole left by Trbojevic

But Elliot is just happy to have finally found his rugby league home.

After a few nervous moments in the controversial loss to the Dragons, Manly fans were shown a glimpse of his attacking prowess against the Raiders.

He may not be Trbojevic but with six tackle breaks, a line break, a line-break assist and no errors in the 24-20 defeat of Canberra, Elliot’s imitation of the NSW Origin star was impressive.

«Every week I am feeling better and better. I dropped two [balls] last week against the Dragons so this week that was a big focus for me, getting under the high balls and trying to be safe at the back there,» Elliot said.

«Obviously Turbo is a great player, we all know that and he does a lot in attack but I am just trying to get my supports up for the side.»

His body may have failed him on the Gold Coast, in particular, and while there were some dark days, Elliot never gave up his dream of playing consistent first-grade football.

«I always thought I had first-grade ability in me. I thought I was worthy of playing in a first-grade competition,» he said.

«Especially with injuries, times can get tough. After three clubs, thoughts like that pop up.

«I’ve always stayed strong and I work hard on trying to better myself. I knew this could be one of the last opportunities I have. I came here with the mindset to do everything I could to better my game and put my best foot forward.»

Before landing at Manly, Elliot crossed paths with opposite number on Saturday, Bulldogs fullback Nick Meaney, at the Knights.

Elliot never doubted his own ability to make his NRL dream a reality and always thought Meaney would do the same.

«Oh yeah, definitely,» Elliot said when asked if Meaney was always destined for first grade.

«He is super fit, he’s fast, he’s tall, he’s athletic – a very athletic build – I could definitely see that he was going to be a regular first-grade player in the future.

«I’ve watched a fair bit of his game time at the Dogs. He’s been doing really well, I’m really happy for him.

«He is a great young kid and he is a very talented fullback as well.»


Elliot isn’t the only player at Manly filling a hole left by an Origin star.

Kane Elgey and Lachlan Croker have been named in the halves for Saturday’s showdown with Hasler’s old team, Canterbury, as Manly try to scrap their way to a few wins in Daly Cherry-Evans’ absence.

«Crokes, he is a great player and a great fella, too. He showed what he could do on the weekend,» Elliot said.

«I have all my faith in both of them.»

Sam is a sports reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald.

Adrian Proszenko is the Chief Rugby League Reporter for the Sydney Morning Herald.

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