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Saturday, October 27, 2018

Bennett: Broncos players will decide if they follow me to Souths

Wayne Bennett said he strongly considered a switch to the Wests Tigers before settling on South Sydney and also moved to reassure Broncos fans he would not be raiding Brisbane's roster to beef up the Rabbitohs' squad.
But he refused to rule out the prospect of players at Brisbane following him to South Sydney in 2020 after it was announced on Thursday he had signed a three-year contract with the Rabbitohs.
Bennett has a long history of bringing players to clubs when he has moved from Brisbane to St George Illawarra and Newcastle and back to the Broncos, most notably Darius Boyd. 
Star trio Tevita Pangai jnr, Corey Oates and Matthew Lodge are yet to re-sign with the Broncos for 2019.
"I won't be looking to do that, no, but again you've got to understand the ramifications," Bennett said in Hull on Friday before England's final training session before Saturday's first Test against New Zealand.
"There's a number of players at the Broncos that specifically come to play because I'm the coach. And I'm not going to be the coach after '19. They're all big boys and have grown up, they'll have to make their own decisions with what they want to do."
Boyd has followed Bennett his entire career but his mentor expects the fullback to finish his career in Queensland. He joined Bennett at the Dragons in 2009, before moving to Newcastle in 2012 and back to the Broncos in 2015.
"Darius won't leave now, he's at the end of his career," Bennett said. "The other boys are there because I was there, it's up to them with what they want to do."
Souths stunned the NRL on Thursday afternoon when they announced they had signed the seven-time premiership-winning coach on a two-year deal starting in 2020. Wests Tigers were in the race for his signature but Bennett said they could not reach a deal.