Broncos’ silent snub forces Walters’ hand
Brisbane legend Kevin Walters has ruled out leading a recovery mission at the Broncos alongside embattled Anthony Seibold with the Maroons coach committed to Queensland Origin's program this season.
The Courier-Mail can reveal Walters will not be back at Red Hill this season despite a raft of club legends, led by Gorden Tallis and Chris Johns, calling for Brisbane's favourite son to help Seibold haul the Broncos out of their form crisis.
A fortnight ago, Walters revealed he would be open to an approach from Seibold, insisting he had no bad blood with the man who beat him to the Broncos' coaching job to succeed Wayne Bennett in 2018.
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Just 24 hours after Walters' stance, Seibold reached out, revealing he had personally phoned the Queensland coach, although he stressed the pair did not discuss any job offers for a Broncos comeback.
Brisbane's latest implosion against the Warriors last Saturday night, their sixth straight defeat, has triggered renewed calls for Walters to assist Seibold, but the Maroons mentor has set the record straight on his Broncos future.
"No, I won't be coming back to the Broncos," Walters said.
"I don't want to say too much because there's been a lot of stuff said about the club.
"But no-one at the Broncos has contacted me offering a job so I am looking forward, I am the Queensland coach and I'm committed to the Maroons this year."
The timing of Seibold's call to Walters is intriguing.
The pair were once close, with Walters hiring Seibold as his Queensland assistant in 2016-17, but they had not spoken in two years when the Broncos coach phoned him before the Warriors clash.
It is understood Seibold touched base with Walters about the Broncos' Origin players and offered to provide feedback on the likes of Joe Ofahengaue, David Fifita and Corey Oates.
The COVID-19 restrictions make it difficult for any new staff member to be added to an NRL club.
Seibold's current assistants are Peter Gentle, Peter Ryan, Kurt Richards and Allan Langer, while Corey Parker cannot enter the Red Hill facility due to his media commitments.
Broncos board member Darren Lockyer played in premiership-winning teams with Walters but said the final call ultimately lay with Seibold.
"Kevvie is the current Queensland Origin coach and won six premierships as a player, he knows what winning looks like and what it takes," he said.
"The head coach chooses his staff and that's the way it should be, so it's up to 'Seibs' if he thinks Kevvie can add value to the group."
Johns, who played 171 games for Brisbane, urged Seibold to find a way to have Walters involved at the club, even for next season.
"Why won't the Broncos reach out to Kevvie and admit they have made a mistake," Johns said.
"The Broncos need someone to help their halves and get some spirit back in the side and they are two of Kevvie's skill sets.
"The last time Anthony Milford was a grand final super hero was when Kevvie was in charge of looking after him.
"If the Broncos claim they are doing a review, why wouldn't they get Kevvie on board?"
Originally published as Broncos' silent snub forces Walters' hand