NSW rugby league legend Laurie Daley has questioned whether Brisbane Broncos players had genuinely been moved to tears by their sixth loss in a row, or whether it was simply an act.
The Broncos’ miserable 2020 season continued on the weekend, their 26-16 loss to the New Zealand Warriors last weekend prompting club CEO Paul White to call a snap press conference to issue a public show of support for embattled coach Anthony Seibold.
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Both club captain Alex Glenn and half Brodie Croft teared up after the final siren
Responding to a listener’s call about the subject, Daley it had occurred to him that the show of emotion might not have been as spontaneous as it seemed, though he said it was unlikely either player had done it for show.
“A couple of blokes asked me the same question yesterday. I don’t think you can stage it but I did think the same way,” Daley said.
“I thought, oh, I wonder whether they’re serious or not. I wonder whether they are crocodile tears. My initial reaction was that.
“I haven’t seen anyone cry like that after eight weeks of footy.”
“Yes you haven’t won for six weeks. I thought oh jeez, is that the right thing to be doing after six weeks, is that the reaction I want from my playing group?”
Laurie Daley critical of Broncos’ show of emotion
Daley’s co-host on the show, former Australian Test captain Michael Clarke, took the opposite view, saying there was no way the pair could have faked their way through those emotions.
But Daley was undeterred, suggesting it would make no sense for junior players to be upset about losing in the fashion the Broncos had so far this season.
“If you were coaching under 8s or under 7s … and your kids were crying after they lost their fifth game in a row what would you say?” he asked.
“Wouldn’t you say ‘boys it’s OK, why do you feel like you have to have tears?’”