War of words erupt
9 April, 2018, 12:00 am
A war of words has erupted between Nathan Brown and Wayne Bennett after the Newcastle coach took a vicious dig at the personal life of his predecessor last night.
Tensions rose to the surface in the wake of Newcastle’s 15-10 NRL victory over Brisbane after Brown took aim at Broncos mentor Bennett with a brutal sledge during his post-game press conference.
Seemingly riled by comments made by Bennett on match-eve, Brown threw a not-so-subtle barb at the master coach before getting up and walking out of his post-match press conference.
Brown was seemingly incensed by suggestions made by Bennett that the Knights had gone backwards under his watch and the club was forced to rebuild because of his mismanagement of their roster.
“It’s a bit sad. The old fox, he’s won seven premierships, he’s coached for 30 years and I ain’t ever publicly bagged Wayne or anyone,” Brown said.
“And then he comes and has a shot at me. I just don’t think he needs to behave like that.
Brown’s comments seemingly made light of the breakdown of Bennett’s 42-year marriage to former wife Trish.
Bennett met his current partner, Dale Cage, during his three-year stint at the Knights where she worked as a receptionist to the club’s doctor.
Bennett’s detractors have long accused him of leaving the club in a disarray following his sudden exit in 2014.
While Bennett took the Knights to within one game of the preliminary final in 2013, they collected three consecutive wooden spoons in the years after he left for his second stint at the Broncos.
Asked on Friday about Brown’s efforts to rebuild the club, Bennett said: “Well he unbuilt it, so I suppose if you unbuild it, the next thing you’ve got to do is rebuild it.
“That’s what he’s done. They’ve lost a lot of players in the last two years, three years, however long Nathan has been there.”