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Riewoldt named captain for record 10th year

Nick Riewoldt is poised to pass the 200-game mark as skipper of St Kilda.
I am hopeful of playing beyond 2016.
Nick Riewoldt

THE 2015 season is set to be full of major milestones for St Kilda great Nick Riewoldt.

The 32-year-old was today named club captain for a 10th season which sees him overtake Danny Frawley (nine seasons: 1987-95) as the club record holder. Darrel Baldock is the third longest serving captain (six years: 1963-68).

“I am incredibly proud to be named captain of this great club for the 2015 season and I can’t believe it’s my 10th year in the role,” Riewoldt told SAINTS.com.au.

“The vibe around the club is very positive and I think it’s obvious to everyone that we have a clear plan and are going in the right direction.

“Our playing list is exciting but still very young so it’s crucial for senior, established players to set the example and provide leadership for both on and off-field standards.

“As captain, making sure we grow and develop this club’s young leaders of the future will be a big focus of mine in 2015.”

Nick Riewoldt and Paddy McCartin with their Dare Iced Coffees.

If he plays every game, the incredibly durable 281-game veteran will become the first player to lead the club in 200 games as captain in Round 19 (v Fremantle at Etihad Stadium), will play his 300th game for the club in Round 20 (v North Melbourne at Blundstone Arena) and will move into fourth on the all-time games played for St Kilda list passing Lenny Hayes (297) and Barry Breen (300).

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Late last year the five-time All-Australian and six-time Trevor Barker Medalist signed on with the club until the end of the 2016 season and, having played all 22-games and kicked 49 goals in 2014, shows no signs of slowing down.

“The body feels really good heading into my 15th season,” he said.

“Obviously as a veteran you have to take it season by season and be smart with your training but I know I still have a lot to contribute and I am hopeful of playing beyond 2016.

“I am also determined to play finals again with the club and be part of our next period of on-field success.”

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Coach Alan Richardson said while the club went through a thorough process to determine the captain, Riewoldt was always the likely candidate.

“When you have a person the calibre of Nick, it comes as no surprise when he is picked by his teammates to be captain,” Richardson said.

“It really just came down to if he still had the passion for the role and, having spoken to him, there is no doubt he has the fire in the belly to lead.

“To be honest, it will be a healthy situation for the club if there are other strong young candidates putting up their hand for the captain’s role in 2016 but Nick is definitely the right man to take us forward in 2015.”

The full seven-man leadership group will be announced Tuesday, February 10.

Nick Riewoldt as captain: 2008-15. (co-captain with Lenny Hayes and Luke Ball 2005, 2007)

 
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