Really? Mal had 5 years as Canberra first grade coach from 1997-2001. Admittedly the last year he was "co-coach" with Matt Elliott which was his handover. In that time they made the finals in 1997 (3rd), 1998 (7th) and 2000 (4th). Sure, he wasn't awesome, but he also didn't have an awesome team given the likes of Mullins, Clyde, Wiki and Stuart left or had left.
Given he then left the game for a few years, ran some businesses, before coming back to coach Origin is the perfect apprenticeship. He learnt about coaching, then he learnt about managing people outside football.
Daley has forever been within rugby league, and his coaching experience is very lean. He's never faced the scrutiny of a first grade coach, and never had the responsibility of a business riding on his shoulders.
Frankly I think Fittler was a far better candidate out of the former players they listed
Daley hasn't had the club coaching experience that Mal had, but for the past five years he's been the Country origin coach and has also coached the Indigenous All-Stars. Obviously neither of these competitions are comparable to Origin in terms of intensity or strategy, but both of them require him to bring together a group of footballers from a number of different clubs and prepare them for a match within a short space of time.
The biggest question marks around him are his selection tendencies, and his tactical thinking. Both the CRL and All-Stars sides are picked by selectors/fans, so we have no way of knowing what kind of lineup a Daley-selected side will run out with. Likewise, I'm not sure if he will have the nous to come up with a Queensland-beating game plan. As the only person who actually watches City-Country, I've seen some cleverness in the play of the Country team, but their competition is nowhere near as class as Queensland.
His lack of business experience is as irrelevant as Meninga's political career. The NSWRL job won't require him to balance a budget, sign cheques, hire/fire staff, etc. He's there to pick 17 footballers and to train them to win a game, exactly like Mal. If the role of coach required experience in the business world, a lot of current coaches would be out of a job.
I don't like Fittler for the role any more than Daley. If it were up to me I'd have kept Stuart on at all costs, regardless of his Eels job. But Daley getting the gig isn't enough to make me crank the Adele up and sit in the shower with all the lights switched off just yet.