Struggling Broncos left without a coach as Seibold answers ‘family emergency’

Brisbane Broncos head coach Anthony Seibold has joined three of his assistants in being placed on a “COVID hold”, meaning he will be away from the team for 14 days.

Broncos chief executive Paul White said Seibold did not fly back with the team after facing South Sydney on Friday night because he was “dealing with a serious family matter” in Sydney.

“He expects to be able to return to Brisbane within 48 hours but in line with COVID regulations, he will need to self-isolate for 14 days once he is back in Queensland,” White said.

“Anthony will return to the Broncos after that. Assistant coach Peter Gentle will coach the team in Anthony’s absence.

“We are working with Anthony to give him all the support he and his family need at this time, and we ask media to respect his privacy.”

Seibold joins assistant Alfie Langer, strength and conditioning coach Ryan Whitley and head of rehab Blake Duncan on the sidelines after they were sent to isolation for attending a private function in Brisbane.

The news is one extra blow for the Broncos, who on Friday suffered their 10th loss from 11 games since the NRL returned from the coronavirus shutdown in May, but they are not the only team to have been affected by the COVID-19 restrictions.

The St George Illawarra Dragons lost star prop Paul Vaughan for two weeks after he went to a cafe on the morning of their loss to the Roosters this week.

And South Sydney coach Wayne Bennett is in isolation after going to lunch with his partner on Wednesday in contravention of the NRL’s rules around the biosecurity bubbles.

Bennett was also fined $20,000, but the Rabbitohs were still good enough to take down the Broncos on Friday night, led by assistant coach Jason Demetriou.