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.comΒ 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.

14 COMMENTS

  1. Sacked via voicemail… how cold and typically spineless of Broncos leadership. It only further emphasises what has been clear all along, that they are intimidated by Bennett just like the media and NRL are. Well, that should work in the Rabbitohs favour now. One of the few advantages in the swap that I can see.

    In Paul White’s defence though I can easily imagine “Papa Smurf” playing games and dodging all incoming calls making sure that he was not contactable in a bid to drag this out further. Good luck Richo, I think you are going to need it.

    • Reg,
      I think you are giving Clint too much leeway. I would take it the other way, especially when considering his actions of late – deliberately scheduling a press conference with disregard to broncos hierarchy to announce he was staying after advising the bunnies he was coming (twice), hiding on the floor of a car to prevent media exposure, working manipulatively behind the scenes on rabbitohs matter.
      Its not like he doesn’t have form in managing situations to suit his own agenda. Remember when he denied denied denied denied that he was going to the Roosters when all and sundry knew it was a done deal, then got caught out and bailed when things didn’t go his way?
      I has complete disdain for the broncos normally, but I don’t think they had any other option but to do it the way they did.

    • Hence my second paragraph above billy and my recent posts decrying Papa Smurf’s role in this fiasco AND the last few years of posts shining a spotlight on Darth Sidious’s dark side personality.

      In short I have been like Susan B. Anthony or Martin Luther King Jr. as the lone voice of civil disaffection in opposition to Bennett for years now on this site.

      I also made it clear when news broke that “Clint” was coming to Redfern that this news did NOT “make my day’! πŸ˜‰

  2. Tit for tat I’d say…..appears Broncos were to make an announcement regarding change of coaches until Mr Bennett had his own press conference announcing he was staying…..

    If the reports are true none of Mr Bennett’s actions were communicated to management……

  3. Glad to see Wayne go.

    That being said, I think he’ll do well at Souths.

    It’s just one of those things.. my vibe is definitely that he will do well for them – especially in the first year.

    He takes over a team that doesn’t have the defensive frailties that the Broncos have had for a few years (and not enough time to coach that into them – not that he is the defensive coach, anyway) and let’s face it, given the acrimonious way Wayne has departed, it’s almost certain that he’ll get some revenge. It’s the typical thing that happens in this situation. Tipping league is a lot about understand the soap opera surrounding it and only fools that wish negative results on teams are going to be saying that Wayne is going to ruin souths. It’s wayyyy more likely the opposite.

    I think souths and brisbane fans have fairly good deals here. Broncos.. needed a change. Souths get one of the most well liked coaches (by players) out there and as I say, I don’t think Wayne has time to turn them into a defensive mess, so I suspect we’ll see a very good Souths, next year. Not sure what we’ll see from Broncos, but I am just happy that something has changed because I was tired of watching a frail Brisbane.

    • I agree with your assessment of Wayne doing well with the current Bunnies roster for the 3 years he is signed, however I would think that Souths would best be served looking elsewhere once those 3 years are up and NOT extending Mr Bennett’s contract. As for the Broncos next season, only time will tell. I am not sure what ‘hangover’ this whole debacle will have on the players (who reportedly love Wayne) and how Seibs manages that. Personally I think the Bunnies will have the better season as opposed to the Broncos, although I am hoping not! The NRL would probably love a Bunnies/Broncos grand final (as would I) considering the shenanigans of the past few months, what a spectacle that would be. Come on Reg, jump on the Bunnies/Broncos Grand Final bus!!!πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

      • Although it would make the perfect headline for News Corp. and the have best marketing appeal for both the NRL and “FIX Sports”, I think a GF between our two clubs would be VERY long odds ATM. Sorry, but I think THAT bus is “on the road to nowhere” and would the ride would be as appealing to me as watching a one-sided Brisbane Sports report.

        Just be careful that Seibold doesn’t pump YOUR tyres up too far and leave YOU with a flat if the Roosters offer him a gazillion dollars!

        • You don’t enjoy watching a one-sided Brisbane Sports report? Who’d have figured?πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€
          Of course it is long odds, but nothing wrong with dreaming……still, and I know you wont like me saying this but realistically the Roosters would have to be favourites to go back to back. Well Seibs has 5 years to pump up my tyres and if as you say the Roosters offer him a gazillion dollars then so be it. If he accepted it would make a mockery of his reasoning for bailing on the Bunnies so that he could come back to QLD.

        • Well, Seibold certainly didn’t waste time making a mockery of the opportunity he was given by Souths or the faith the Rabbitohs showed him. So it would be consistent with his character to date. Especially if “reports” that he knew about this since April or May, less than 6 months into the job, can be proven. If so it would paint Seibold as the “Benedict Arnold” of Rabbitohs club history.

          Which other rookie coach has ever been given an opportunity to coach first grade and as a sign of appreciation started secretly interviewing and approaching clubs 6 months into his tenure?

          Not happy dreaglor!

      • Bunnies vs swayback Ponies grand finalπŸ˜€πŸ€£πŸ€£πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ€£πŸ˜€πŸ˜†πŸ˜‚ahahahaha very funny. Is this the big tip for all those conspiracy theory lovers who came up with the same rubbish last year when the Conspiracy theologists had the NRL RIGGING the 2018 grand final after Cronk left Melbourne for Sydney.

        Brisbane will be lucky to make the eight and Souffths have got no hope with the papa smurf.πŸ°πŸ‘‡πŸ¦„πŸ‘‡calling the shots. Remember Bennett hates paying big bucks for front rowers as they all mostly play half a game these days. Especially those lazy Burgess twins. So expect the Burgess twins to be disgruntled next season when they miss out on a pay rise.πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜†πŸ˜€πŸ€£πŸ€£πŸ€£πŸ€£πŸ˜πŸ‡πŸ‘Ž and are distracted signing on elsewhere.

        • Oh Woody, the 2018 Grand Final was rigged??? Shame, and here I was thinking that the Roosters won because they were by far the better team!!!😜😜😜😜😜

        • Come on dreaglor, I didn’t think you was a conspiracy theologian, I didn’t have you as one of those people who believe America imploded their own twin towers. But I can see Bennett imploding Soufffths twin towers. Those Burges twin props had better start hunting around for a new club before the grim reaper arrives.πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

        • “conspiracy theologian” πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

          Is that someone who preaches conspiracy theories from a pulpit? He would need to be a pretty convincing conspiracy theorist to pull that off.

          As for the rest, you are starting to sound like me Woody. I’m not sure if that should frighten us both!

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