Broncos assistant coach Jason Demetriou (left) with Wayne Bennett. Picture: AAP
Broncos assistant coach Jason Demetriou (left) with Wayne Bennett. Picture: AAP

Demetriou: Why I can break Broncos’ drought

WAYNE Bennett's assistant Jason Demetriou is adamant he can succeed at the Broncos and has urged Brisbane bosses to give him a crack at breaking the longest premiership drought in the club's history.

Brisbane's search to replace Bennett for the 2020 season gathered steam when Demetriou became the third candidate to be formally interviewed for the Broncos' head-coaching role.

It is understood Souths' Anthony Seibold and New Zealand coach Michael Maguire have already been interviewed, leaving Queensland Origin mentor Kevin Walters as the final man to state his case for the job.

Demetriou is considered an outside hope because of his lack of profile and NRL experience, but the 42-year-old insists he can handle the pressure of coaching the Broncos.

Bennett's right-hand man has a formidable resume, having won three second-tier premierships, while also assisting Cowboys coach Paul Green in North Queensland's NRL title victory in 2015.

That gives Demetriou confidence he could deliver Brisbane's first premiership since 2006.

"I would love to coach the Broncos," Demetriou said.

"I feel I've done my apprenticeship and I feel I deserve an opportunity.

"Spending the past two years under Wayne and having worked at the Broncos, I feel I'm ready now.

"If you look at it statistically, in terms of delivering premierships, which is the key thing coaches can be judged on, at every level I've delivered.

"I've won the Intrust Super Cup, I've won the NRL Championship and I worked under 'Greenie' the year the Cowboys won the premiership, so I can't do much more."

Demetriou fronted a three-man committee comprising chief executive Paul White, chairman Karl Morris and board member Darren Lockyer.

The shortlist of four candidates have undergone psychological profiling to help determine whether they have the skill set and mental fortitude to succeed at Queensland's flagship NRL club.

 

Anthony Seibold is one of the frontrunners to succeed Wayne Bennett.
Anthony Seibold is one of the frontrunners to succeed Wayne Bennett.

 

While Demetriou cannot boast the five premierships Walters won as a player at the Broncos, he has won respect. He is highly rated by Brisbane players and Bennett has urged the Broncos' board to install Demetriou as his successor.

When Walters resigned as Brisbane's attack coach in April, Demetriou took over and turned the Broncos into one of the most dangerous offensive outfits in the league.

In 19 games, the Broncos scored 487 points at an average of 25.6 per game. Demetriou twice formulated game plans that beat Seibold's South Sydney side last season.

"I understand the culture of the Broncos," Demetriou said.

 

Michael Maguire is also in the running. Picture: Getty
Michael Maguire is also in the running. Picture: Getty

 

"I don't have the high-profile name and I probably don't have the instant kudos or respect of other coaches who have played NRL or Origin, but that's a challenge that excites me.

"I know I have to earn respect and if I do, it's genuine. What's more important is the ability to educate, teach and have an understanding of the individual to build that trust and respect.

"I feel I've got the respect of the Broncos' playing group and I've worked with them closely.

"My future is up in the air at the moment. I'm off-contract next year, but I love it here in Brisbane and hopefully I can be the head coach of the Broncos."

Get ready for cricket like never before. FREE Sport HD + Entertainment until the first 4K cricket ball as part of 3 months free on a 12 month plan. SIGN UP TODAY. T&Cs apply.