Two of Wayne Bennett’s most loyal servants, Beau Scott and Jeremy Smith, say they won’t be looking to follow their mentor out the door at Newcastle.
Newcastle enforcers Beau Scott and Jeremy Smith say they’ll remain at the Knights next year, with no get-out clauses to follow departing coach Wayne Bennett out the door.
Knights chief executive Matt Gidley conceded the club may be powerless to stop some players exercising contract loopholes now that Bennett has announced he’s leaving.
Darius Boyd has confirmed he’s one of those, revealing on Sunday he has no idea where he will be next year.
But in a boost for the embattled club, two of Bennett’s other disciples Scott and Smith, who won a premiership under the super coach at St George Illawarra in 2010 – claim they will see out their current deals with Newcastle.
NSW State of Origin star Scott has two years to run and New Zealand forward Smith another season.
The pair admit they were shocked by Bennett’s decision to leave but deny they too may look to walk away.
“Wayne’s got his own reasons why he’s leaving. As a playing group we need to get on with things and all we can do is play football,” Scott told AAP.
“Where we stand at the moment … things are in good stead.”
Smith fully expected to be coached by Bennett next year but said his exit would not change his own mentality.
“I felt a little bit empty when I was told. But that’s business isn’t it. He has to get on with life,” Smith said.
“It doesn’t change things for me at all. I’m here to play footy.”
Knights boss Gidley said he would need to work on finalising the club’s roster for 2015 in the coming weeks.
It appears almost certain that Queensland and Kangaroos ace Boyd will leave.
However, salary cap pressures at Bennett’s two main suitors St George Illawarra and Brisbane could mean Boyd has to go it alone with a different coach for the first time in his career.