Tony Smith makes Kevin Sinfield admission in pursuit of new Hull FC captain

Hull FC head coach Tony Smith says one of the club’s young players could captain the side in 2023.

Smith has yet to decide on who will skipper the Black and Whites next season, with many expecting the new boss to opt for one of the senior players.

However, speaking to BBC Radio Humberside, the Australian revealed that he doesn’t consider age a factor in selecting his leader, pointing to the fact Kevin Sinfield was captain at 23 when he coached Leeds in 2004.

“It’s way too early for me to make a decision on who should be captain, I need to work with these guys for a while,” said Smith.

“I’m a big one to promote leadership right across the team. Even young people can become very good leaders, so it isn’t always about age or experience.

“I have seen some exceptional young people as leaders. Kevin Sinfield when I took over at Leeds Rhinos was one of those exceptional leaders at a very young age.”

During his first season at Headingley, Smith led the Rhinos to a first league title in 32 years with Sinfield as captain.

It turned out to be the first of seven Super League trophies Sinfield lifted in his glittering career, underlining his undoubted abilities as a leader in the big moments.

“Kevin had many people in front of him in terms of experience and age when I took over, but he had the qualities of becoming a great captain and he certainly did that,” Smith added.

In terms of Hull and the 2023 campaign, the new boss went on to explain that a new captain would be selected once he had chance to fully analyse the squad.

“I’ll be making those assessments as we go along,” said Smith. “It’s an area that I really like exploring.

“We will see what leadership is there in the group and what we can develop within that.”

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