Sydney have unveiled a new eight-man leadership group for the 2021 season, with star trio Josh Kennedy, Luke Parker and Dane Rampe set to remain as a three-piece captaincy structure.
The trio will be remain in the leadership group alongside defender Callum Mills and veteran forward Lance Franklin, while forward Tom Papley, speedster Harry Cunningham and defender Jake Lloyd join the unit.
“It’s a really exciting new chapter for the club – there are a lot of new faces and I’m excited to see what we can do this year,” Kennedy told the club website.
— AFL (@AFL) February 18, 2021
“The captaincy is something I will again take with both hands and I’m really looking forward to the challenge alongside Dane and Luke.
“I’ve learned so many things from those two in terms of leadership, how to prepare and play, and about mindset – I could talk all day about the impact they have had on me.”
Papley had a breakout season in 2020, booting 26 goals and 27 behinds from 17 matches and narrowly missing an All-Australian selection for his efforts.
The 24-year-old was excitement with his new role, stating he has seen vast improvements in his leadership capabilities.
“I’ve come a long way with my leadership,” Papley said.
“I think I have a good relationship with everyone in the playing group and can be a sounding board for the younger players, so that’s where I like to think my leadership qualities are.”
Two-time Bob Skilton medallist Jake Lloyd expressed his excitement in being appointed to the leadership group.
"I am excited with the young group we have this year and I want to help us develop as quick as we can," Lloyd said.
Cunningham added to the prior pair's comments, stating his gratitude for the new role.
“I pride myself on being a team man and selfless so it’s great to be able to hear that from teammates," Cunningham said.
"I will continue to learn off the great leaders and the captains we have at the moment."