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Brumbies hopes of bagging Buderus fading

Date

Chris Dutton, Chris Wilson

NRL player Danny Buderus (left) and ACT Brumbies coach Jake White.

NRL player Danny Buderus (left) and ACT Brumbies coach Jake White. Photo: Alan Porritt

The ACT Brumbies will search for a new collision coach with a rugby league background after Danny Buderus said he "stuffed up" in a cross-code deal that lasted just hours.

The NRL stepped in to block rugby league great Buderus' consultant coaching role with the Brumbies for the 2013 Super Rugby season because he still has a year left on his playing contract with the Newcastle Knights.

What was supposed to be a marquee announcement quickly developed into confusion and uncertainty on Thursday as Buderus was unveiled as the Brumbies' collision coach.

Danny Buderus playing for the Knights in 2012.

Danny Buderus playing for the Knights in 2012. Photo: Darren Pateman

But it sparked a cross-code rivalry with the NRL fuming that the Knights had left them in the dark about the deal.

The Brumbies were still keen to work with Buderus despite the NRL trying to block the move.

Head coach Jake White wanted to wait until he had received official word from Buderus before moving on and searching for a new collision coach.

It's understood the Brumbies will search for another candidate with a rugby league background to help them become more physical in attack and defence for the next Super Rugby season.

Buderus' time in the collision coaching job lasted just a few hours.

Buderus was due to train with the Brumbies for the first time on Thursday, but his appearance was cancelled when the NRL got involved.

At noon he wore a Brumbies training top during a press conference and spoke of his desire to help the team with its tackle technique.

By 5pm the NRL had stepped in to ensure the coaching job would never eventuate

''We're happy to work any way we can without upsetting anybody,'' White told The Canberra Times.

''We want to do it in the right manner [to recruit Buderus as a coach], and if we haven't done it in the right manner we apologise.

''For a guy who is going to retire in a year's time, it's a bit of professional development for him and a massive opportunity for us. It's a win-win situation for everybody.

''The NRL has been professional longer than us and for them to promote life after rugby league is fantastic.''

Buderus has a year to run on his contract with the Knights and will retire at the end of next season.

In trying to set himself up for life after playing, the veteran of more than 240 NRL games was keen to juggle the work load and travel to Canberra once a week for training.

He would then continue in the role on a consultant basis during the Super Rugby and NRL seasons.

But the NRL was shocked by the news and officials said it was unlikely the deal would go ahead.

Because Buderus is still playing for the Knights, there are salary cap and third party requirements that need to be ratified by NRL officials.

"I've stuffed up and feel full-on silly," Buderus told News Limited.

"It's just a complete misunderstanding on my part.

"An opportunity arose to have a chance to do a bit of different sort of coaching in a consultancy capacity and get a bit of experience and I seriously didn't fully understand the other side of it.

"It was just an oversight and maybe it's a case of players being better educated at what we can and can't do. I know I've learnt a very harsh lesson today."

The NRL released a statement that said officials could not see how Buderus - a former Australian and NSW captain - could promote a rival code.

No Australian Super Rugby players are allowed to sign on as coaches in any capacity with rugby league teams while they are still playing.

The Brumbies believe Buderus could improve their tackle technique and help them become more physically dominant on the field.

Prior to the NRL stepping in, the veteran also believed the Knights could benefit from the relationship.

''To have an experience like this at my age, I'm learning but I'm keen to throw a few things up and test the boys out,'' Buderus said.

''Hopefully they improve, even if that's 10 per cent.

''I'm here to learn and take ideas back to rugby league as well … I'm bending over backwards for this opportunity because I know how good an opportunity it is.''

The Knights released a statement on Thursday saying they did not know the finer details of the agreement, but The Canberra Times understands Newcastle was made aware of the proposed arrangement in advance of the announcement.

3 comments

  • What a narrow minded and insecure bunch these leaguies are, they preach "life after sport", decades after it was introduced in Rugby Union, yet they will not allow the players to take advantage of it.
    Danny Buderus is going to teach kids how to tackle, plain and simple, he is not the new pinup poster boy for the ARU, he is just a specialist coach looking to earn a dollar and look after life after football.
    The NRL has gotten vere sensetive over recent years at the number of defectors from its game to "The Game They Play in Heaven" yet they ignore the number or Rugby stars they "coerced" to their sport in years gone by.
    There is room enough for both codes in this country and who knows, one of the kids Danny hopefully educates will be there for you to poach in the future, if they arent good enough to play the real rugby code.

    Commenter
    Bob
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    November 09, 2012, 8:34AM
    • What a dumb comment! In any profession, your employer has the right to stop you from taking on a second position with another employer and of course would stop you from working for a competitor at the same time as working for them. Do you expect that your employer would allow you to take up a second position with a competitor? Do you think that the ARU or AFL would allow one of their players to work for an ARLC team at the same time as they're contracted to the ARU? I think you're living in fairy land if you truely believe that. The ARLC did the only sensible thing that they could do in this situation.

      Commenter
      Dazza
      Date and time
      November 09, 2012, 11:17AM
  • I am disgusted with the NRL, and ashamed to be a league follower. this action by the NRL is picky and petty and shows how insecure they are with respect to the other codes. After everything Danny Bederus has given to this code this is the way he is treated. The NRL should be apologising to him, not the other way around. The won,t be any surprise if Danny totally leaves the rugby league after he finishes playing.

    Commenter
    Garry B
    Date and time
    November 09, 2012, 6:14PM
    Comments are now closed

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