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Jonathan Brown to captain Lions

27/10/2008 06:18:19 PM Comments (0)

Sole Brisbane Lions captain Jonathan Brown will become the "benchmark" for the AFL club's revamped player code of conduct, according to new coach Michael Voss.

The fishbowl existence of a Brisbane sporting superstar was rammed home for the Lions following the Broncos' disastrous end to their 2008 NRL season.

Three players were investigated over sexual assault allegations and skipper Darren Lockyer admitted it was him who tackled a Brisbane bar manager in circulated CCTV footage.

Voss said he had discussed a behaviour code with his charges - and was convinced Brown as sole skipper would be ideal under the new model.

Brown, 27, had spent the last two seasons as co-captain with Nigel Lappin, Luke Power and Simon Black and formerly Chris Johnson in 2007.

"They (Lions players) told me what they wanted to live by ... and they said what they wanted to be held accountable for," said Voss, before holding his first pre-season training session.

"The captain of our football club is a very important person because they are the benchmark for the whole team.

"He (Brown) will lead the team in all those facets they we want to stand by."

Asked if the new code had been prompted by the Broncos debacle, Voss said: "It is always the challenge to set our standards higher.

"We know now the world we live in, that's a fact of life.

"There is a saturation of the media like never before.

"(But) Browny has got to live to that standard. Ultimately from the leaders within an organisation, that's what we expect."

Voss has already had one hiccup since taking over the Lions reins in September.

Defender Joel Macdonald is sweating on whether any further action will be taken by the club after being fined $250 for a public nuisance charge last week.

Voss said it had been rammed home to his players that they were representing the Lions brand on and off the field.

"Whether it is three in the morning or 12 in the afternoon you still carry the Lions brand with you," he said.

"It's one of those unwritten laws that exist being a representative of our football club - you wear that badge everywhere.

"To be a part of this football club is an honour and we need to start to treat it that way more often."

But Brown did not believe the club had to worry too much about improving player discipline.

"I don't think any sporting club in Australia can say that they have been a pack of angels," said the triple premiership player.

"But our players have been very conscious of the brand so I don't think we are starting from the bottom of the pile."

Voss said Power and Black endorsed Brown's appointment but would be disappointed with losing their captaincy roles.

Former co-captains Lappin and Johnson have retired.

But he believed Power and Black would still play a major role in the club's leadership group.

Lions chairman Tony Kelly said appointing Brown as sole captain had been on top of Voss' wish list.

"Michael approached the board in October with two very strong recommendations," he said.

"Firstly to create a sole captaincy structure for the team and secondly to install inspirational leader and courageous forward Jonathan Brown into that role."

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