Wayne will love taking on Broncos: Langer - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Wayne will love taking on Broncos: Langer

Wayne Heming 14/09/2011 01:29:53 PM Comments (0)

Allan Langer has a pretty good idea how Wayne Bennett will be preparing for Saturday's NRL sudden-death semi-final against his former club.

Bennett's supercoach reputation will be tested as he attempts to rally faltering premiers St George Illawarra for the clash with a rampant Brisbane.

Throw in the added emotion of Brisbane - and their home Suncorp Stadium crowd - desperate to see skipper Darren Lockyer's farewell season continue and it's a huge challenge.

The Dragons struggled badly when overrun by the Wests Tigers in their qualifying final but Langer says such circumstances bring out Bennett's best.

"Wayne will love coming up here wanting to get one over the Broncos," said Brisbane assistant Langer, who shared in many of Bennett's great coaching moments as a player.

"He's the sort of bloke who loves the pressure, the more pressure, the more it suits him."

He believed Bennett's history shows he's best when the odds are stacked against his team, and he would have a plan to shut down Brisbane with a Dragons defence that has been the benchmark for the past two seasons.

"That's when he's most dangerous," said Langer.

"I'm sure he's down there (in Wollongong) firing them up for this weekend.

"Wayne's not a rant and raver. He'll be pulling individuals aside and pumping them up for this one."

But how will Bennett feel about possibly ending Lockyer's NRL career on Saturday?

"They're great mates but sometimes you always want to beat your great mates," offered former halfback Langer, who orchestrated Brisbane's 1992 grand final win over the Dragons for Bennett.

Langer insists he's remained good mates with Bennett despite reports of a falling out a few years over a comment Bennett made at a private function.

"He's a great bloke and a great friend of mine," he said.

"When we're playing against him or he's coaching against us we want to beat him.

"But after the game we're all friends again."

Brisbane's rookie head coach Anthony Griffin has found Langer a valuable ally, not just as an astute football brain but as a character who can lift players.

"Alfie can make the players laugh, I can't," said Griffin.

"But he also has the player's respect.

"They love being around him and he reads the game very well."

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