Bennett's Broncos reign ends via voicemail

Wayne Bennett's long tenure with the NRL club was ended by voicemail and email.
Wayne Bennett's long tenure with the NRL club was ended by voicemail and email.

A voicemail message is probably not how anyone expected Wayne Bennett's long reign at Brisbane to come to an end.

After 25 seasons, six premierships and over 600 first grade matches in charge of the Broncos, the club was unable to speak to the 68-year-old coaching great before announcing his sacking on Sunday afternoon.

It's an outcome that doesn't sit well with Broncos chief executive Paul White.

"I made multiple phone calls and I unfortunately had to communicate that decision via voice message and then over email," White said.

"Is that disappointing? Yes it was, but such is the nature of this whole issue that it was important that we had it resolved, particularly before the players return tomorrow."

Broncos chairman Karl Morris said the resolution to the coaching drama at Red Hill was far from the "elegant solution" the club had sought.

It's a stark contrast to Bennett's exit in 2008, when the club granted him a release so he could join St George Illawarra in a largely amicable departure.

However Bennett made it clear more than two months ago the club would likely have to sack him to shift him when he famously told reporters: "I made it easy for them last time, I'm not doing it this time."

Bennett left the Broncos the first time as a legend, the man who took a new club and turned it into a leading force in the game.

His return in 2014 promised much and he took the club to the grand final in 2015, narrowly missing out on another premiership to North Queensland in a golden-point defeat.

Now that legacy will likely be tarnished by the bitterness of the past few weeks as the coach dug his heels in.

"From a very personal point of view it's very sad," White said.

"There's been nothing in what we've been trying to deal that has been able to give anyone a perfect solution.

"My preference would have been to meet face-to-face and I left that as my message and that was my intention but it just wasn't achievable and we just had to move forward."

The club will now start life under new coach Anthony Seibold, who is expected to take training on Monday, while Bennett heads in the opposite direction to South Sydney, his fifth NRL club.

WAYNE BENNETT'S BRONCOS COACHING CAREER

Games: 631

Win rate: 63.7 per cent

Finals series: 23

Grand finals 7 (1992, 93, 97, 98, 2000, 2006, 2015)

Premierships: 6 (1992, 93, 97, 98, 2000, 2006)

Australian Associated Press