Bellamy’s claim to coaching greatness

Paul Green has received a groundswell of support to be named the Dally M coach of the year on the back of North Queensland’s unlikely charge to the grand final.

However the numbers show his Melbourne opposite Craig Bellamy not only deserves to be spoken about as the leading contender, he’s positioned himself as one of the greatest mentors of all time.

According to Fox Sports Stats, Bellamy is within touching distance of surpassing the great Norm Provan as the most successful coach of all time.

Heading into Sunday’s grand final, Bellamy has won 268 of 394 career matches, giving him a win rate of 68.02 per cent.

Of coaches who have overseen 50-plus games, it puts him only behind Provan (181 games, 124 wins, 68.5 per cent), who oversaw the great St George side to four premierships as a player-coach in the late 60s.

Next Sunday’s game will be Bellamy’s seventh grand final, putting him ahead of Provan, Jack Gibson and Warren Ryan and only behind Wayne Bennett (nine) for most season deciders as a coach.

As well, Bellamy has the fourth most career wins of any coach in the 110-history of the game behind Bennett (489), Tim Sheens (340) and Brian Smith (305).

Green has been heavily backed to be named coach of the year at the game’s annual awards night on Wednesday after guiding the Cowboys to one of the most unlikely grand final appearance ever.

However, unfortunately for his chances, similar to the RLPA awards, only rounds one to 26 count when calculating the winner and finals don’t come into consideration.

As well, Bellamy’s side carved out an impeccable record during 2017 – dropping just four games, two of which came during the representative period when they were either without or rested stars Cameron Smith, Billy Slater and Cooper Cronk.

Bellamy is known as the toughest task master in the competition and his pre-season slogs are known for their intensity.

Asked how he manages to get the most out of his players without burning them out, Cronk says: “I think he’s got a really good balance between respect and honesty.

“I think he’s got a terrific balance between intensity and care. He has genuine love and care for his players which is right up there. He takes time to introduce himself to families and kids and girlfriends and everything like that.

“He’s the first person in the gym at 5am working hard. He’s a bit of a meat and veg type of guy, pretty simple but very effective.”

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