Hopoate happy for reunion with Hasler

Former New South Wales Origin star Will Hopoate has turned to his first coach, Des Hasler, to resurrect his rugby league career with Canterbury.

Rated one of the hottest players in the game under Hasler at Manly, Hopoate has signed with the Dogs for the next two seasons, hoping his former mentor can reinvigorate his playing career which stalled with Parramatta where he scored just seven tries in 38 games.

The relationship between Hopoate and Hasler goes back to his father John's playing days with the Sea Eagles, and Will has a huge respect for Hasler and what he can do for his game.

Hopoate's form with Manly earned him five Origin appearances, but he has struggled to regain that form with the inconsistent Eels and was granted a release at the weekend to sign with the Dogs.

"It will be great getting back with Des. I will be like a sponge, soaking up everything he can teach me," said the powerful 23-year-old who will take over Tim Lafai's centre spot.

Hopoate spent two years doing missionary work before returning the NRL with Parramatta, but he was never able to rediscover the form he displayed with Manly as one of the game's more dangerous offensive players.

"I've played with a few of the (Bulldogs) Origin boys and been mentored by Des - he knows how to coach and get the best out of me," he said after a training session with his new teammates.

"The Moz (Morris) twins and big Klem (David Klemmer), Joshy Reynolds ... I've played with them before and I'm looking forward to playing with them on a weekly basis."

Hasler also said he was looking forward to working with Hopoate again.

"He's a great young footballer and he will fit in very well here," the coach said.


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