Matt Elliott
Players wanted Tony Iro as coach

Matt Elliott has been appointed New Zealand Warriors coach – and will walk into a player mutiny.

Warriors players and former New Zealand champions were united yesterday in slamming the club’s decision to appoint Elliott over local favourite Tony Iro.

“It’s taken far too long,” said Taylor, who plays for New Zealand in tomorrow night’s Test against Australia in Townsville. “I feel sorry for Tony Iro. He is in limbo, just like the players, and he has family.

“The players all want Tony to be the coach. He has been there for seven years. The majority of our team are Toyota Cup players and Tony has brought us all through.

“I don’t understand why he doesn’t get a shot. He has been assistant coach of the Kiwis, assistant coach of the NRL side now for the last four years.

“They were saying (they wanted) a supercoach, a Bennett or Bellamy. I’m a player and whatever coach comes I’ve got to do my job.”

New Zealand’s legendary halfback, Gary Freeman, said: “It will be a tough place to walk into when the players want someone else.”