Kangaroos coach Mal Meninga answers questions at a press conference.
Kangaroos coach Mal Meninga answers questions at a press conference. PAUL MILLER

Bennett wants my job, says Meninga

RUGBY LEAGUE: Mal Meninga has gone on the attack against Wayne Bennett, saying the England coach wants the Kangaroos job.

Brisbane Broncos coach Bennett applied for the Australian post on a part-time basis, repeatedly saying the Kangaroos did not need a full-time coach.

But when the ARL Commission gave former Queensland Origin coach Meninga the job, Bennett pushed for the England role.

"He wants my job but he hasn't got it," Meninga told reporters at Manchester airport ahead of the Four Nations, which starts next weekend.

"So obviously he'll be trying his damnedest to usurp me. We'll see what happens.

"It's not personal. It's a bit of fun hopefully. A bit of banter doesn't go astray."

Meninga (pictured) would not be drawn on a question suggesting Bennett took the England role just to prove a point, saying: "I don't know. You'll have to ask him that question.

"But I still think it's good for international rugby league, having the best coach, the master coach, coaching England."

Bennett has picked five uncapped players for a warm-up match against France at Parc des Sports in Avignon tomorrow morning (AEST).

He named St Helens duo Mark Percival and Jonny Lomax, Castleford halfback Luke Gale, Hull prop Scott Taylor and Leeds' Stevie Ward in the final match before the team's Four Nations opener against New Zealand early next Sunday (AEST).

The Kangaroos open their campaign against Scotland next Saturday morning.



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