BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 09: Broncos coach Wayne Bennett speaks to media after the NRL Elimination Final match between the Brisbane Broncos and the St George Illawarra Dragons at Suncorp Stadium on September 9, 2018 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Brisbane Broncos CEO Paul White has explained the circumstances behind the unexpected sacking of long-standing coach Wayne Bennett.

White sensationally sacked Bennett on Sunday via voicemail, after an alleged breach of Bennett’s contract prompted the Broncos to sever ties with the coaching veteran a year before he was due to depart.

Bennett had already agreed to a two-year coaching deal with the Rabbitohs to begin in 2020 but will now join the Souths as head coach in 2019, with current Souths coach Anthony Seibold to replace Bennett at the Broncos in a direct coaching trade.

White told NRL.com that he ideally would have sacked Bennett in person but a lack of communication prompted him to deliver the news over voicemail.

“I made multiple phone calls and I unfortunately had to communicate that decision via voice message and over email,” White said.

“You might ask was that disappointing? Yes it was. But such was the nature of this whole issue that it was important that we had it resolved, particularly before the players returned tomorrow.

“I wasn’t in a position to speak to him directly.”

It is understood that Bennett was spending time with family on Sunday and had left his phone at home, indicating that he did not purposefully ignore White’s attempts to contact him.

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