League: Kevin Walters working his magic on sidelines

By Vince Rugari

Origin boss Walters to return to the club's coaching staff for the remainder of the season. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Origin boss Walters to return to the club's coaching staff for the remainder of the season. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Kevin Walters doesn't have to be at Red Hill to help Brisbane's out-of-form halves get back to their best, veteran Sam Thaiday reckons.

Broncos coach Wayne Bennett has reportedly turned down an offer from Queensland Origin boss Walters to return to the club's coaching staff for the remainder of the season, mainly so Walters could reunite with Ben Hunt and Anthony Milford, who have struggled to recapture their scintillating form of 2015.

The former test and Origin playmaker worked closely with Hunt and Milford during Brisbane's march to last year's grand final and admitted last week it "would have been great" to return to the club had Bennett allowed it.

But Thaiday suspects Walters is working his magic in private anyway.

"Kevvy doesn't need to be here as a coach to give those guys confidence," said Thaiday.

"I'm sure over the past few months he's probably been in contact with the boys. I can't say if he has or not, I'm not Benny or Milf.

"But that's the kind of bloke Kevvy is - he would go out of his way [for] those boys to give them confidence.

"Kevvy was really good for them last year."

Hunt, meanwhile, is confident he and Milford can break free from their funk without Walters' help. "I think we can get back there on our own," he said.

"It's not up to Kevvy or anyone else for us to play good football. It comes down to me and Milf and what we need to do.

"We set a pretty good standard for ourselves, me and Milf. But I guess we haven't been living up that.

"We need to work it out ourselves."

Milford said he had "no idea" Walters was even in talks to come back.

"He was a good coach, he worked a lot with the halves as well, getting us forward. But I have no idea what was going on," he said.

- AAP

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