NRL BRONCOS SEA EAGLES
NRL BRONCOS SEA EAGLES

Boyd: I’m not going anywhere

Broncos captain Darius Boyd has spoken of his disappointment at Wayne Bennett's departure, but insists he will not follow his only NRL coach to South Sydney.

Boyd will report for pre-season training at Red Hill this week as he embarks on his third year as Broncos captain.

Bennett, who is set to be replaced by Rabbitohs coach Anthony Seibold from 2020, has been Boyd's only coach in 292 NRL games across 13 seasons.

They were first united in 2006 when Bennett blooded Boyd in the NRL as a teenager fresh out of high school on the Gold Coast.

Boyd went on to play in Brisbane's NRL premiership-winning team that season and became a regular fixture in first grade.

Darius Boyd followed coach Wayne Bennett to the Dragons...
Darius Boyd followed coach Wayne Bennett to the Dragons...

A tight bond grew between them and when Bennett left the Broncos for St George-Illawarra in 2009 he took Boyd with him.

They won a premiership together at the Dragons in 2010 before Boyd followed Bennett to Newcastle in 2012 then back to the Broncos in 2015.

Bennett, 68, will not coach the Broncos beyond 2019 after the club appointed South Sydney's Seibold on a four-year deal from 2020.

...and to the Knights. Picture: Robert McKell.
...and to the Knights. Picture: Robert McKell.

Bennett and Seibold could yet swap clubs immediately, but Boyd insists he will finish his career at the Broncos.

"I'm definitely disappointed," Boyd said of Bennett's departure.

"I've been with Wayne my whole career and would have loved to have finished it off with him. Wayne has been great to me on and off the field.

"But it's a business, whether you're a player or a coach. You can't do it forever or have that fairytale ending.

"Wayne has had to move on. The club's had to do what's best for them and Wayne has to look after himself as well.

"I'd like Wayne to see it out (next year). He basically helped build the club and it would be a sad way for him to leave.

"I hope he stays (for 2019) but there's not much you can do about it. He's got another year and I'm excited to have that last year with him and see what we can do.

"Yeah, (I will) definitely (stay here)."

Broncos captain Darius Boyd would like coach Wayne Bennett to see out his contract at Brisbane. Picture: AAP
Broncos captain Darius Boyd would like coach Wayne Bennett to see out his contract at Brisbane. Picture: AAP

Boyd was coached by Seibold during Queensland's 2017 State of Origin campaign while he was an assistant to Maroons coach Kevin Walters.

"He was really good," Boyd said of Seibold.

"He was doing a lot of our attack in Origin. Everything he did was very thorough and he got his point across. He seemed to care about the boys.

"I'm sure he will bring a lot of that to the club when he comes in 2020."

Boyd's past two seasons have been hampered by hamstring injuries.

He was restricted in Brisbane's 2017 finals campaign and missed the following World Cup with the problem which carried into the 2018 pre-season.

Boyd, 31, battled through the issue to play all 25 games of last season and slowly worked his way back into form after losing his Queensland Origin jersey.

Darius Boyd has battled injury over the past two seasons but is now aiming to see out his contract at the Broncos. Picture: AAP
Darius Boyd has battled injury over the past two seasons but is now aiming to see out his contract at the Broncos. Picture: AAP

Midway through last season, Boyd admitted he may not see out his current contract until 2021 because of the problem, but has since found renewed confidence in his body.

"I'm excited about having a proper pre-season and picking up where I left off at the end of last season," he said.

"At the end of the last pre-season my hammies weren't holding up well and I didn't get a lot of trial matches in.

"I wasn't sure what the future held. I didn't want to not play to my potential.

"But I ended up playing every game. I'd like to improve on some of my form, I wasn't at my best, but in the last six-eight weeks I improved.

"If I'm still playing at a high level and enjoying my footy I'd like to see out my contract I signed with the club."

Boyd is the only player remaining at the Broncos since the club's last NRL premiership in 2006 following the retirement of Sam Thaiday this year.

The Broncos went within seconds of winning a seventh title in 2015, only to be denied by Johnathan Thurston's Cowboys, but the future has rarely looked brighter at Red Hill.

With the likes of young forwards Jaydn Su'A, David Fifita and Payne Haas coming through the ranks alongside Matt Gillett and Tevita Panga Jr, Brisbane will boast an exciting pack in 2019.

Then there is representative stars Anthony Milford, James Roberts and Jack Bird who have the potential to deliver the Broncos another premiership.

Darius Boyd is excited about Brisbane’s premiership chances next season. Picture: Getty Images
Darius Boyd is excited about Brisbane’s premiership chances next season. Picture: Getty Images

With the Bennett saga close to being finalised, Boyd believes Brisbane could go all the way next year.

"Last season was pretty challenging for a number of reasons," he said.

"All the scrutiny on and off the field (was tough), personally and team-wise.

"We stuck solid and pulled together pretty well. That's what I'm most excited about.

"We've got some quality players back and have a really good side to do something special.

"Some of the guys that debuted this year did such a great job at a young age. They will be more experienced and better for the run.

"Guys like Tevita and Joe (Ofahengaue) played well and are really starting to come into their own.

"We've got a young squad and everyone is really pumped to get in, train hard and work together."