Broncos coach Wayne Bennett has told diehard Brisbane fans that the vagaries of sport prevent him from promising his side will go one better next season as he praised their attendance during the finals series.
Just as they had done in two finals matches at Suncorp Stadium and at the Telstra Premiership Grand Final on Sunday, Broncos fans gathered en masse at the team's Red Hill base on Monday to lift the spirits of their heroes.
More than 52 per cent of the 353,087 fans who attended the NRL Finals Series in 2015 – beating the finals attendance record of 351,448 set in 2009 – came from the three matches in which the Broncos took part with Suncorp hosting two finals crowds in excess of 50,000 for the first time in the club's history.
Despite the one-point loss to the Cowboys for which the Broncos played their part in one of the greatest grand finals of all time, Bennett said there no guarantees that the pain of their defeat would translate into a seventh premiership in 2016.
"One of the real false things about sport is what we're going to do next year just after we've finished this year," Bennett told the hundreds of fans on hand on Monday.
"All of the stars just about aligned for us to be in that position.
"We could have multiple injuries next year to some key players, we could lose some form at some stage so it's too far away for me to make any prediction as to what might happen next year.
"With the closeness of this competition it's a fine line but it's one we have to go down again next year but right now I just want a break and not to think too much about it all."
Bennett said that Broncos members and fans had played a significant role in the team's on-field success this season, particularly their attendance at finals matches against the Cowboys and Roosters in which they were victorious.
"They've just had the highest attendance of any finals series as a result of last night but that's because of the two home games here in Brisbane," Bennett said.
"I've been a long-term coach here at the Broncos and the Broncos have always valued their fans and the fans value the club and it's a great relationship between both parties.
"I think we do it better than anybody in the game and I just know what the fans bring and I'm sure they appreciate what the club gives back in return.
"I told the boys after the game that I was extremely proud of them, proud of their effort throughout the season and last night was no exception.
"It's pretty painful in the end to lose the way we did but we did our best.
"We've done that all season for you and you've been a wonderful support for us and I hope you all come back next year and we'll all start again."
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