Asst Price to coach Dragons after Bennett - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Asst Price to coach Dragons after Bennett

30/03/2011 01:50:17 PM Comments (0)

Assistant Steve Price is to coach NRL premiers St George Illawarra from 2012, with super-coach Wayne Bennett confirming his departure.

Dragons chief executive Peter Doust announced Price's looming promotion at a media conference in Wollongong, saying the club had tried all it could to retain Bennett beyond this season.

Bennett said he declined to renew his contract because he felt he had completed his job at the club, having delivering the Dragons a long-awaited premiership in 2010.

He refused to give any indication of his next port of call, though it is believed it will come down to a decision between Newcastle and a return to Brisbane, the club he guided to six premierships as foundation coach.

Both clubs have stated their desire to lure the seven-time premiership winner, while a third interested party - South Sydney - appears to have dropped out of the race for his signature.

The first two years of Bennett's tenure with the joint venture Dragons have been hugely successful, with the club capturing back-to-back minor premierships before he ended the Dragons' 31-year title drought with last year's grand final triumph.

"I advised Peter two weeks ago that I wouldn't be renewing my contract and at this point in time that's the only decision I've made - I have not made a decision on where I'll coach in 2012," Bennett said.

"I believe I've been a part of what I came here for, I didn't come here as a long-term coach, I came here to get a job done. I believe that has been done and I think it's a good time for me to move on."

While admitting family considerations had played a part in his decision, Bennett denied he had positioned himself for a return to the Broncos, who he coached for the first 21 years of the club's existence.

"If I had to be away for another three years, I'll be away for another three years," he said.

Asked whether money was his motivation, Bennett said: "It's not about money, if it was about money I wouldn't be leaving here."

Price, who was recommended for the job by Bennett, said the opportunity to coach in the NRL after a ten-year apprenticeship as an assistant was the realisation of a long-held dream.

"I've always had aspirations to be an NRL coach and I'm very grateful and honoured to be given this opportunity," Price said.

But my post doesn't start till November 1, the big fella's driving the bus, I'm just the little bloke sitting next to him for the time being and we've got a job to do this year."

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