'I'll stab you': Broncos threat recalled for derby

Wayne Bennett's most feared former defensive hitman explains how the Dolphins coach will handle the loss of suspended Felise Kaufusi, but he hopes he won't.

WAYNE BENNETT, coach of the Rabbitohs, looks on during a South Sydney Rabbitohs NRL training session at Redfern Oval in Sydney, Australia.
WAYNE BENNETT, coach of the Rabbitohs, looks on during a South Sydney Rabbitohs NRL training session at Redfern Oval in Sydney, Australia. Picture: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

Wayne Bennett's former Brisbane defensive hitman Peter Ryan says his old coach has the formula for the Dolphins to cope with the loss of suspended enforcer Felise Kaufusi in the clash with the Broncos, but he hopes it fails.

"The person who steps into the breach will have a job and it will be simply about doing what they do well. That is why Wayne coaches so well," Ryan told AAP ahead of Friday night's derby at Suncorp Stadium between the two undefeated sides.

"But I don't give a rat's about Redcliffe. They can fall in a hole as far as I am concerned.

"I am a Bronco through and through and a life member. I hope the guy that replaces Kaufusi plays like a busted arse."

One of starting second-rowers Kenny Bromwich or Connelly Lemuelu will play in Kaufusi's right side position.

Kaufusi changed the course of the Dolphins' opening two wins against the Sydney Roosters and Canberra with defensive wallops for the ages.

"You might supposedly be a superstar but at the Dolphins you are one of the 30 players and they all feel important," Bennett said.

"The guy that steps into that role is not going to be Kaufusi. I want him to bring his game and what he brings to the team."

Ryan won two titles at the Broncos and famously crunched Cronulla's David Peachey in the 1997 Super League decider with a tackle, described by the Nine Network's commentator Peter Sterling at the time as "a missile", that sealed Brisbane's win. The ball spilled free and Steve Renouf scored.

He was also Bennett's assistant coach when the Broncos won their last title in 2006 where he masterminded the defensive strategy.

Ryan said he understood Bennett's methodology ahead of the sold-out showdown.

"He wants the two points and the win ... but in the big scheme of things it means nothing for the Dolphins' season as such, which is why Wayne is playing down the loss of Kaufusi," Ryan said.

Ryan knows what he is talking about. He was suspended for Brisbane's 38-12 grand final win over Canterbury in 1998, but he played a role off the field when he threatened to use trainer Tony 'Springer' Spencer's scissors to give Tonie Carroll - the man who replaced him - a poignant message.

"In 1998 Tunza (Carroll) was playing like a busted arse in the first half of that game. I threatened him at halftime with a pair of Springer's scissors," Ryan recalled.

"I said, 'I will run on the field with a training shirt and stab you if you don't pick your game up'. In the second half he was the animal he didn't realise he could be. He broke the game open."

Ryan is not tipping Bennett to use scissors, more rugby league science that has worked in the laboratory.

"I understand the way Wayne coaches," Ryan said.

"He takes all the power and influence away from the stakeholders, the fans and all the rest and as a player turns it into just doing your job. If you do your job well there is a fair chance you win."