It's a day dream
GRAFTON Ghosts junior Jarrad Day is one step closer to realising one of his dreams next year, after being offered the chance to trial with the Manly Sea Eagles.
Day, 17, will fly to Sydney in January, where he'll undergo an intensive week of training at the club's Narrabeen headquarters.
"It's one of those dreams I had as a kid but I never thought it would it would come true," Day said. "When I found out I was pretty damn happy, that's for sure."
Sea Eagles talent scout John White said he was contacted by Ghosts captain-coach Ryan Farrell earlier in the season.
Farrell is a former Sea Eagle himself, having played for Manly's Jersey Flegg team in 2004.
"Ryan rang and asked me to come down and have a look at Jarrad," White said. "Jarrad then sent DVDs down to the Manly club and, apart from a few minor things to work on, they were interested."
"They" - Manly recruitment manager Dave Warwick and football manager Steve Giggs - invited Day to trial with the club, as well as set up a training program in the meantime.
"I'm going down for the grand final next week and I'll be coming back with a training program designed to help him improve his speed," White said.
Day has been playing for the Ghosts since he was five years old, and has played prop all the way through. That may be about to change at Manly, where it's more likely he would play in the second row.
The role won't be new to the 192cm, 100kg forward, who has filled in the second row for most of this year.
"A few players were out injured during the year so I slotted back in there," Day said.
White, who brought Phil Bailey, Albert Torrens, and a host of other future first-graders to Manly, said Day had developed well.
"He is a junior player but he was regularly used as a replacement in first grade," White said.
"From his physique you can see there's room to add more size and strength so there's a lot we can work with."
The week-long trial will culminate in a game against an under-18 team from Newcastle, where Day's destiny will be in his own hands.
"It's going to be a heavy week for Jarrad but he will learn a lot," White said. "How he performs and where he goes from there is in his hands."