Bennett says more pain for Knights fans
An unwavering Wayne Bennett has warned impatient Newcastle fans they may have to endure even more pain as he strives to make the club a long-term NRL force.
While perplexed Parramatta coach Stephen Kearney is struggling for answers to the last placed Eels’ woes, seven-time premiership winning mentor Bennett has 26 seasons of experience to call on.
Throwing his hands in the air or tossing in the towel is not part of Bennett’s make up and after Newcastle’s fourth straight loss — and a hefty 50-24 scoreline to boot — he was even more dogmatic he could, and would, turn the club’s fortunes around.
“I haven’t coached for 26 years in the NRL to not know what works,” said Bennett, amazed his “fragile” players were able to get back from 24-0 in the first half to still be in the game 26-24 midway through the second half.
“My challenge is to get them to buy into what I know works.
“I made the choice when I went there I didn’t want them to finish eight or ninth every year.
“We’re not interested in that.
“We’re driving to be a top team and setting up a system that will make them a top club for a long period of time.
“If it takes some pain now then we’ll take the pain and we’ll keep taking the pain until we get it right.
“You look at the Broncos and that’s what they’ve produced, they’ve produced it for 25 years.
“You look at the (Melbourne) Storm they’ve produced the same thing, year after year, week after week.
“That’s where we won’t to be.”
Bennett may be starting to sound like a broken record but it’s in that unbreakable resolve and belief that he has always found strength.
“They (players) have to experience what I know and what I know works,” he said.
“I’ve been here so many times and I’m not second guessing myself about it.
“That’s what experience gives you.
“We all know where we’re going and more importantly I know where we’re going.”
Meanwhile, Bennett declined the opportunity to take a shot at his former club who refused to clear youngster Dane Gagai to play on Sunday.
“Those reports were accurate,” said Bennett when asked if Brisbane had blocked Newcastle’s attempts to get a clearance for the released Bronco.
“They were playing within the rules.”
In Sunday’s other game, Melbourne relied heavily on their star players once again to recover from a 12-0 deficit and overcome bogey team the Warriors 22-12.
Star fullback Billy Slater was a constant threat in attack, while captain and hooker Cameron Smith scored the match-sealing try off a Slater break six minutes to play.
Brisbane’s thrashing of the Knights was not even the biggest thumping of the weekend, with Wests Tigers showing no sympathy for an out-of-sorts Canberra outfit on Saturday night, piling on the tries in a 40-0 mauling.
Also on Saturday, Canterbury cemented their spot on the top four with a thrilling 23-18 win over South Sydney, while on Friday night Manly downed St George Illawarra 20-8 and Gold Coast continued their bright form with a 28-12 upset of North Queensland.© AAP 2013
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