Wayne Bennett’s future is more clouded than ever after St George Illawarra players admitted they have been left out of the loop as the supercoach ponders his future beyond the 2011 season.
Not even Dragons captain Ben Hornby has a clue if Bennett will stay with the club he has transformed since taking the reins at the end of the 2009 season.
Hornby and teammates say they will stay a cohesive unit throughout 2011 even if their coach decides to depart after three years as a hired gun for the Saints.
And the mail is strong that South Sydney Rabbitohs, North Queensland Cowboys, Brisbane Broncos and the soon-to-be Nathan Tinkler-financed Newcastle Knights are all interested in securing his services.
Bennett has declined to talk about where his future may lie other than to say in the lead-up to last year’s grand final that he would use the off-season to talk to his family in Brisbane.
Dragons players are naturally keen for him to stay in red and white, but Hornby said it was simply a matter for the club to sort out. Experienced centre Matt Cooper said there had been no communication between club and players as to which direction Bennett may be leaning.
Adding to complexity to Bennett’s decision is a new bid to form a second Brisbane based team, hoping to enter the NRL competition in 2013. Bennett’s wife Trish is set to move into an apartment in Brisbane and the birth of an NRL team to rival the Broncos could be just the challenge for a man who snapped the Dragons’ 31-year premiership drought last season.