New Salford Red Devils half-back Jackson Hastings has insisted that talk of his fallout with former Manly team-mate Daly Cherry-Evans was blown out of proportion as he prepares for his Super League debut tomorrow night.
The 22-year-old will resume his career in England after leaving the Sea Eagles following a well-publicised bust-up with Cherry-Evans, eventually leading to his demotion from the first-team before being granted a release last month.
Hastings will make his Salford bow on Friday against Leeds – but prior to that, the half-back told TotalRL he and Cherry-Evans have long since resolved their differences.
“It’s nothing new,” he said when asked about the speculation Down Under.
“I’ve been smashed to pieces in the media a few times and now, it’s water off a duck’s back for me.
“They get one little bit of info and run with it to the point where it’s taken way out of proportion – and that is what happened with this.
“Me and Daly are absolutely fine; we’ve spoken on numerous occasions, had dinner together before I came over here and all sorts of things like that.
“The incident was the incident; the media got hold of it, ran with it and tried to dig into it and make something of it – but me and Daly are fine. I’m here now and looking forward to a new challenge, and he’s played State of Origin since. It’s not impacted on us, clearly.”
Hastings also admits he cannot wait to get started in a Salford shirt tomorrow evening – despite having not played a game of rugby for over six weeks.
“I’ll be playing,” he said.
“I’m jumping out of my skin too to get going. I’ve got real butterflies – but everyone has made me feel really welcome, particularly on social media.
“I’m more used to negative attention on social media but everyone has been really positive with me since I got here. I love interacting with the fans on social media so hopefully that can continue at Salford!”