Rugby League

Brisbane Broncos coach Wayne Bennett keeping mum on who'll be next captain

Wayne Bennett knows who will be the next Brisbane captain. He just isn't telling anyone - not yet anyway.

The Broncos master coach was at his tight-lipped best on Monday when asked if he had decided who would replace retired club great Justin Hodges as skipper ahead of the 2016 NRL season.

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"Yeah I have," a poker-faced Bennett said.

Asked if he could share the news, Bennett said: "No, I can't."

Playing his cards close to his chest: Wayne Bennett.
Playing his cards close to his chest: Wayne Bennett. Photo: Getty Images

Pressed further Bennett said an official announcement would not be made until March at the earliest. Until then Bennett said he would run the rule over the successful, but still oblivious, candidate.

"I just want to watch what they do and make sure I am making the right decision," Bennett said. "There is no media hurry for it. We are not playing anybody. March would be about the time.


"It's the same time frame I did it last year."

Bennett unveiled Hodges as sole captain upon his Broncos return last year after the champion centre shared duties with Corey Parker. Veteran lock Parker is again expected to be in the captaincy mix along with fullback Darius Boyd, halfback Ben Hunt and hooker Andrew McCullough.

Meanwhile, Bennett said he would not replace Kevin Walters on the Broncos staff after his former assistant took over as Queensland Origin coach.

"We thought about that but we won't at this point in time," said Bennett, who has kept Stephen Kearney as his assistant. "We will get on with the job with Steve and myself. We are pleased for Kevvie. We are elated for him.

"He will be around (the Broncos) a little bit but he won't be part of the staff as we had known it in the past."

Bennett ran the rule over the Broncos at their return to pre-season training on Monday. It marked the first time the whole squad had come together since their heartbreaking golden point NRL grand final loss to North Queensland.

Asked if he liked what he saw from his Broncos troops, Bennett said: "Ask me in six weeks."