Bennett avoids captaincy issue - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bennett avoids captaincy issue

By Brent Read and Greg Davis 23/02/2004 08:10:03 PM Comments (0)

Brisbane coach Wayne Bennett wasted little time in distancing himself from the Australian captaincy issue - only hours after he had been appointed to his second stint in charge of the national side.

Bennett was unanimously appointed to the position by the Australian Rugby League at a board meeting in Sydney, taking over from the highly-successful Chris Anderson.

The five-time premiership-winning coach led Australia to two Test victories in 1998 before stepping down the next season to concentrate on his club commitments.

He will make his return to international rugby league in April when Australia takes on New Zealand at Newcastle's EnergyAustralia Stadium.

A decision on who captains the side will be made when the team is selected for the April 23 clash with the Kiwis.

Queensland officials are pushing for Brisbane five-eighth Darren Lockyer to retain the position after his performance on the Kangaroo tour while their NSW counterparts are behind Andrew Johns, who missed that tour with a neck injury.

ARL chief executive Geoff Carr said the captaincy wasn't discussed at the meeting and Bennett later said he would leave the decision to the ARL.

"It will be an issue but it won't be an issue for this coach," Bennett said.

"It's got nothing to do with me. I don't have a say in who's captain. It's a board decision.

"They won't even seek my opinion on it so I'm happy with whoever is the captain."

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