Super Rugby
James Slipper to captain Queensland Reds
ESPN Staff
January 16, 2015
Jame Slipper is "humbled" by the decision to hand him the Reds' captaincy © Getty Images

James Slipper will captain Queensland Reds through the 2015 Super Rugby season, with the prop supported in the role by new vice-captains Rob Simmons and Karmichael Hunt. Slipper, a Reds and Wallabies vice-captain in 2014, assumes the armband from James Horwill.

"I'm incredibly humbled by this decision," Slipper said. "I take great pride in playing for Queensland, so to be named captain is a great honour. James has been a great captain and I know he will be a great mentor to me in my first season as skipper of the Reds. He gives everything for Queensland and he deserves to go out on the right note, so I'll do everything I can to make sure that happens."

Slipper in 2014 won the Pilecki Medal winner as Reds Players' Player of the Year and claimed the Rugby Union Players' Association Medal for Excellence, and Reds coach Richard Graham said the prop would be "a strong leader for this team".

Graham, meanwhile, commended Horwill for his commitment to the club as it prepared to usher in a new generation of leaders.

"Everyone knows James Horwill is a passionate Queenslander who plays with an incredible amount of pride," Graham said. "It is important that he helps with this transition and I have no doubts he will provide a wealth of support to James Slipper, who has proven with his actions both on and off the field he will be a strong leader for this team.

"In appointing two new vice-captains, we are continuing to expand the leadership base within our group. Rob understands the strategic side of the game well and deserves an opportunity to be part of the leadership group. Having an official title will provide some more formal opportunities for him to lead within the team.

"While Karmichael is new to the team, he has shown throughout his career and during Reds pre-season that his standards and work ethic will drive the group to higher expectations.

"As with any team, it is important that we continue to provide opportunities for players to grow - and that includes in their ability to lead.

"All of these guys have been appointed because of what I believe they can bring to the leadership role, but they are by no means the only leaders within our group.

"We are also fortunate to have four players in our squad who have had the honour of representing Queensland more than 100 times in their careers. Quade Cooper, Will Genia, Greg Holmes and James Horwill, all very experienced players, have held leadership roles within the Reds at various times. They are already leaders within this group so they don't need to carry a formal title.

Horwill, who is the most-capped Reds captain in history, having led them in 69 matches in his eight-year tenure, said the new leadership group had "my 100% support and I'm excited to see what they can do not only this season but for many years to come".

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

Live Sports

Communication error please reload the page.