'True Blue' Daley dismisses NRL club role

NSW Blues State of Origin coach Laurie Daley speaks to the media during a press conference at the Sofitel Hotel in Brisbane. Picture: GETTY IMAGES
NSW Blues State of Origin coach Laurie Daley speaks to the media during a press conference at the Sofitel Hotel in Brisbane. Picture: GETTY IMAGES


Fresh from halting the seemingly unstoppable Queensland force, Blues coach Laurie Daley says he has no intention of abandoning his NSW post for a foray into clubland any time soon.

Daley, who will go down in Blues folklore as the man who ended the Maroons's eight-year State of Origin dominance, is one of many names linked to the coaching role at St George Illawarra, a position currently held by his Blues assistant coach Paul McGregor.

Daley has also been mentioned as candidate for stop-gap coach at Cronulla following the resignation of Peter Sharp last week but gave a categorical "no" when asked on Monday whether he was interested in either role.

"First of all my main focus is on Wednesday night and then my focus will be on NSW again for 2015," Daley said.

"I haven't spoken to anyone from any club and I don't expect to speak to anyone at any club.

"What I want to do is make sure my total focus is on this game on Wednesday night because I think it would be unfair if I was contemplating doing anything else other than doing the job on Wednesday.

"Going further down the track I'm committed to NSW next year and hopefully I can do that for a period of time."

Daley was admittedly so exhausted following last year's series he battled shingles in the wake of the Blues's 2-1 loss.

He reckons the days of coaches juggling both roles is a thing of the past.

"I take my hat off to the people who've done it in the past because it's a massive job," Daley said.

"I haven't been a club coach but it [Origin] is draining.

"Last year I was buggered at the end of it and I reckon at the end of this one I'll be looking for a rest.

"I don't know how they bounce back into a club situation a day later after an Origin game.

"Maybe if you win it's a bit different, but certainly after losing it'd be pretty tough.

"The amount of exposure and the pressure that you feel with the constant speculation and the constant buzz around Origin - it is draining.

"As a coach, if you were doing both it'd be quite tough, I'd think."

While he remains committed to the Blues role long term, he says he hasn't let himself think about building a dynasty to rival that of Queensland's eight years.

"Once you start worrying about two and three games ahead you get yourselves in all sorts of trouble," Daley said.

"The focus for us is just this game [Origin III], and then once this year's series is over we'll start to focus on the next game.

"It's so tight, Origin. There's not much between the two states. So if you start getting carried away and start thinking too far in front of yourself, you come back to earth pretty quickly."


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