Geary and Steele to co-captain the Saints

Star St Kilda midfielder Jack Steele says he is looking forward to the responsibilities of top leadership after being named as co-captain alongside Jarryn Geary.

Steele, the 25-year old All-Australian, has joined Geary in a seven-man leadership group, including new vice-captains Dougal Howard and Tim Membrey, with Seb Ross, Jack Billings and Callum Wilkie rounding out the group.

Jarryn Geary (left) and Jack Steele will both lead the Saints in 2021.Credit:Getty Images

This will be Geary’s fifth year as captain but Steele’s elevation suggests this is the start of a handover.

“I’m really grateful to have been given this honour, it’s a true privilege,” Steele said.

“When you walk through the Hall of Fame at RSEA Park and see names like Frawley, Harvey, Barker and Baldock, it’s really humbling to now be continuing their legacy.

“To have ‘Gears’ alongside me is also really special. He’s really taken me under his wing, and I’ve learned so much from him since joining the club. His leadership is second to none, not just his voice on-field, but also how he rallies the group off it.

“I’m looking forward to continuing to learn from him, while also getting stuck into all the responsibilities of being an AFL captain.“

Steele has played 97 senior matches, including 17 at Greater Western Sydney before he joined the Saints ahead of the 2017 season. He was named on the bench of the All-Australian side last year, becoming the first Saint since Nick Riewoldt in 2014 to earn top honours.

He led the Saints in disposals (376), clearances (90), tackles (94), inside 50s (54) and ground-ball gets (117) and had more than 100 more pressure acts than second-placed Dan Butler in a year when the club made a breakthrough finals appearance.

Geary said Steele’s rise reinforced the development the squad has made in terms of leadership in recent seasons.

“Jack and I have caught up quite regularly over the past few years to talk about his role as a leader among the group,” Geary said.

“When I started at the club, we had established leaders like Nick Riewoldt, Robert Harvey and Leigh Montagna filling these roles.

“Now to have someone like Callum Wilkie in the leadership group after being recruited as a mature-aged rookie and playing less than 50 games, it shows that the next generation of Saints are ready to make this team their own.”

Geary is on the mend from a broken leg, having been hurt at training last month, and remains in a race to be fit for round one.

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