I meet Simon at a party in Hamilton I wlould say at the beginning of his career. He was with another young fellow a Rugby player who looked the part. Simon physically was not as big as his mate, but I had to draw out of him what he was doing as he was then a very humble and quiet lad. He said the Warriors were going to have an open day the following Saturday, so I said I would take my Dad along.
Dad and I rocked up and watched an in house trial and it must have been the year Stev Price was signed as he was walking around the track as he must have been injured .
We meet a few players and Simon and I introduced him to Dad and I took the piss out of him light hearted for letting someone through during the trial. The thing I remember was how seriously he took it and said something like I will work on it.
Never caught up with him after that but like everyone admired his work ethic his humble approach a once in a lifetime Warrior.
Did the hard yards, led by example, epitomised the meaning of humility and respect. Still remember briefly meeting him after the game against the doggies a few years back where big Kenny M scored a miraculous runaway try. Simon was just about to head in to the sheds after some photos with the fans. There were a few fans still waiting further down the sideline (us included) waiting for a pic. A lad nearby called out to him. Simon could have easily walked away as he had taken his fair few pics already. However the man that he is didn't hesitate to make his way back down the sideline to ensure that no fan went away disappointed.
Thanks for the memories. Absolute legend of the game!
Mannering was an absolute workhorse for the club over the years. If half the squad had the work ethic, commitment and attitude Simon did - we would no longer be waiting for our maiden premiership. Thanks for all your effort over the years JuJu...