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It's salute Wayne Bennett and Mick Malthouse day

Expert
25th April, 2011
31
1692 Reads
St. George Illawarra Dragons 2010 NRL premiers

Wayne Bennett and Mick Malthouse are two crack coaches. The Dragons’ Bennett, a seven-time NRL premiership coach and defending champion, saw his side home safely 24-10 yesterday in their Anzac Day clash with the Roosters, at the SFS.

Collingwood’s Malthouse, a three-time AFL premiership coach and defending champion, likewise over Essendon 16.11.107 to 11.11.77, at the MCG.

They are so alike as highly successful coaches and their longevity is extraordinary. But their personalities are like chalk and cheese: Bennett (61), so quiet, so reserved, giving little away, the media not one of his pet subjects – he tolerates them, at best; Malthouse (57), so easy-going, so out-going, who makes a point of befriending the media.

It doesn’t matter what personality route they take, coaching success knows no ground rules, just a “W”.

So how do they compare with their peers in the history of their codes?

NRL:
* Bennett (Broncos-Dragons) – seven premierships, 613 games, 394 wins, 207 losses, and 12 draws – for 66.23%.
* Jack Gibson (Easts-St George-Newtown-Souths-Parramatta-Sharks) – five premierships, 322 games, 214 wins, 100 losses, eight draws – 66.45%.
* Norm Provan (St George-Parramatta-Sharks) – four premierships, 180 games, 123 wins, 40 losses, three draws – 70%.
* Clive Churchill (South Sydney-Canterbury) – four premierships, 247 games, 143 wins, 100 losses, four draws – 59.51%.
* Tim Sheens (Penrith-Canberra-Cowboys-Wests Tigers) – four premierships, 625 games, 316 wins, 298 losses, 11 draws – 52.32%.
* Bobby Fulton (Easts-Manly) – two premierships, 383 games, 252 winds, 121 losses, 10 draws – 68.41%.
* Brian Smith (Illawarra-St George-Parramatta-Newcastle-Roosters) – no premierships, 560 games, 289 wins, 261 losses, 10 draws – 53.39%.

AFL:
* Malthouse (Richmond-West Coast-Collingwood) – three premierships, 644 games, 369 wins, 269 losses, six draws – 58.23%.
* Norm Smith (Fitzroy-Melbourne-South Melbourne) – six premierships, 474 games, 255 wins, 212 losses, seven draws – 55.26%.
* Tom Hafey (Richmond-Collingwood-Geelong-Swans) – four premierships, 522 games, 336 wins, 183 losses, four draws – 64.75%.
* Allan Jeans (St Kilda-Hawthorn-Richmond) – four premierships, 575 games, 357 wins, 216 losses, two draws – 62.43%.
* David Parkin (Hawthorn-Carlton-Fitzroy) – four premierships, 633 games, 367 wins, 264 losses, two draws – 58.29%.
* Kevin Sheedy (Essendon) – four premierships, 635 games, 386 wins, 242 losses, seven draws – 57.89%.
* Leigh Matthews (Collingwood-Brisbane) – four premierships, 442 games, 255 wins, 179 losses, eight draws – 57.72%.
* Ron Barassi (Carlton-North Melbourne-Melbourne-Swans) – four premierships, 515 games, 275 wins, 236 losses, fur draws – 54.17%.

The standouts:
* Most premierships – Bennett seven in the NRL, Smith six in the VFL.
* Most games – Malthouse 644 in the AFL, Sheens 625 in the NRL.
* Highest win percentage – Provan 70% in the NRL, Hafey 64.75 in the AFL.
* Longest unbroken service at the one club – Sheedy’s 27 years at Essendon, Bennett’s 21 at the Broncos.
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The other standout, the Holy Grails in the two codes, are internal: the NRL’s State of Origin and the AFL’s Grand Final.

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Neither code rates on the international circuit, but it’s a totally different story with football and rugby.

The Football World Cup and the Rugby World Cup are the code’s Holy Grails – the second and third biggest sporting events in the world every four years, behind the summer Olympic Games.

So Australians are fortunate to have the choice of four football codes: each one of them has something different, and appealing, to offer.

But this is salute Wayne Bennett and Mick Malthouse day. They both thoroughly deserve the recognition.

Class acts, good blokes.