Date: August 14 2012
CONTENDERS for the Blues coaching job will be invited to address the NSW Rugby League board in coming weeks after a meeting yesterday decided to stick with appointing a non-NRL coach next season.
NSWRL general manager Geoff Carr has contacted up to 15 potential candidates in recent days, including Canterbury coach Des Hasler and Gold Coast's John Cartwright to gauge their interest but the next Blues mentor will not be in charge of an NRL club.
Trent Barrett and Jim Dymock, who were Ricky Stuart's assistants during the past two Origin campaigns, are believed to be favourites for the job but NSW greats Laurie Daley and Brad Fittler will also come under consideration.
Other names mentioned include former Warriors and Eels coach Daniel Anderson and ex-Illawarra, Roosters and North Queensland mentor Graham Murray, who coached the Blues in 2006 and 2007.
''The board has decided to give some of the candidates the opportunity to address them so we are in the process of organising that,'' Carr said. ''It is felt that is the right thing to do given that there is no absolute standout for the job. If there had been we would have just appointed someone but the board felt that in fairness to the guys in line they should have an opportunity to go before the board.''
''With there being no standout, the board is now pretty determined to have a full-time coach and I think there is that realisation from everyone that is a tough gig to coach a club side as well.''
While he ruled himself out after accepting a three-year contract to coach Parramatta, Stuart is expected to offer his assistance to Barrett or Dymock should they get the job.
Meanwhile, NSW centre Michael Jennings is set to miss Penrith's match against the Warriors on Sunday after being charged over two tackles in Sunday's 20-10 loss to Canberra, including a late shot on Raiders playmaker Josh McCrone. Jennings faces a one-match ban for the dangerous contact charge but will incur demerit points only if he pleads guilty to a high tackle on Joe Picker.
In other news, Cartwright said he was confident Titans prop Luke Bailey had not played his last NRL game after scans confirmed the 32-year-old snapped his Achilles tendon in Friday's loss to Melbourne.
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