Paul Green has rubbished speculation that the Cowboys NRL club’s board pressured him to knock back the Queensland State of Origin coaching job.
“They wouldn’t have stopped me if I really wanted to do it,” the North Queensland mentor said.
But Green said he still hoped to one day hold the Maroons reins.
Green rejected an offer to coach Queensland last month after Mal Meninga ended his remarkable 10 year reign that included nine series wins.
Meninga’s former assistant Kevin Walters was initially overlooked but eventually got the nod in an awkward backflip by the Queensland Rugby League.
Speculation was rife that Green made the agonising decision to decline QRL overtures due to pressure from the Cowboys board who wanted their coach to concentrate solely on North Queensland’s NRL title defence.
But Green said the timing just wasn’t right.
“There were a lot of key stakeholders to consider in making that decision – it wasn’t just about me and what I wanted,” he said.
“I wanted to make sure I thought through everything and what it meant for everyone involved.
“The board were good, they were supportive.
“I just felt it wasn’t quite the right time to take that on.
“Hopefully one day in the future I get another opportunity.”
Green said he had not spoken to Walters since he belatedly received the QRL nod but backed Meninga’s former assistant.
“Kevvie has got the job now and I wish him all the best as does all of Queensland,” he said.
Green did not believe he had burnt bridges at the QRL by declining the Origin gig.
“Having played Origin and experienced it since I was a kid, it was a dream of mine to to coach them so to knock them back was a tough decision,” he said.
“But I am confident with the reasons why.
“It will allow me to concentrate fully on what we are doing here at the Cowboys.
“You never know when that opportunity comes around next.
“(But) if I keep doing a good job here hopefully one day I get another opportunity.”
Walters will need to assemble a new Queensland support staff.
Former Maroons assistant Michael Hagan looks set to link with new national coach Meninga at the Kangaroos while long term team doctor Roy Saunders and physio Scott Thornton are believed to have also moved on.