Swear by it - Bennett gets tough on Broncos
The old fashioned spray delivered by Broncos coach Wayne Bennett at training on Monday morning revealed two things.
One, just how disappointed the coach was in the general performance of his team in the 34-12 loss to the St George Illawarra Dragons on Thursday night.
Two, that the performance cannot be repeated any time soon and that training is the place to fine-tune how to do things well and not in a sloppy fashion.
During a wrestling session Bennett exhorted halfback Kodi Nikorima to get his technique up to scratch.
The 68-year-old coach used a few expletives to make sure his point was clear.
Bennett's words to Nikorima do not suggest he was to blame for Thursday night's loss or that he was the only one who was told to lift at training.
The veteran coach had plenty to say at training and not all of it was complimentary.
The general crackle in the atmosphere at Broncos HQ ahead of the clash with the North Queensland Cowboys on Friday night was clearly evident.
Alex Glenn was obviously not pleased when he was hit in the head by an errant pass and let everybody know, while lock Josh McGuire was barking at his teammates, imploring them to get their drills right.
All of this showed at least that the Broncos players care about their performances and aren't accepting second best.
The Broncos are last on the Telstra Premiership ladder after round one and don't intend to stay there, but they will remain there after round two if they dish up the same performance against the Cowboys.
To provide some perspective on what happened at training, NRL.com columnist and former Broncos centre Steve Renouf said that it was not the first time Bennett had revealed his displeasure so outwardly after a dud display.
''We copped sprays ... if we deserved it,'' Renouf said.
''If you deserve it, you have to take it on the chin.
''Sometimes Wayne displays that disappointment outwardly, sometimes not, but he would have been filthy with that performance on Thursday night.
''It was appalling. We had nothing in the middle, and for the Brisbane Broncos you expect a better performance in the first game of the season.''
Renouf said Bennett knew who responded to sprays and who didn't, but he said any displeasure voiced by the coach was deserved.
''Wayne also knows who they are going to face this week,'' Australia's 1992 World Cup final hero said.
''It is 60-40 that the Cowboys will beat the Broncos and Wayne knows we have to play 100 per cent better to beat them this week.''
The positive sign for the Broncos is that the players themselves admit they were poor on Thursday night.
Hooker Andrew McCullough, when asked about Bennett's colourful language, said that there had been some ''stupid football'' played. Forward Korbin Sims told NRL.com it was an ''un-Broncos-like'' performance.