With Wayne Bennett busy assembling his pod in the idyllic Brisbane suburb of The, Ivan Cleary has taken up the 2022 job of being the NRL coach most interested in playing mind games.

Having struggled with sleep last grand final week after getting winked at by Bennett, Cleary has been enjoying the odd mind game throughout the 2022 season.

However, after being awarded the minor premiership and securing a spot in the grand final, Cleary says he is done with mind games this year…or is he?

Halfway through the traditional 1000 chats with sports journos, Cleary admitted to playing the odd mind game this year but won’t be doing it ahead of the big dance which is exactly what he would say regardless.

“No I’m not playing any mind games this year,” stated Cleary, his narrow eyes slinking with the smooth stealth of a stalking Panther pursuing prey under the cover of night. 

“Or am I?”

“Did you check your mailbox recently Brad? I think someone might have made a special delivery…”

“Heh heh heh.”


“Mwuah ha ha ha!”


“No, in all seriousness it’s all about the next man up mentality, showing up for one another, a-choker-says-what and making sure we finish well.”



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