Lockyer content with retirement decision - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lockyer content with retirement decision

Justin Chadwick 23/06/2011 06:18:28 PM Comments (0)

Queensland skipper Darren Lockyer is content with his decision to retire at the end of the NRL season, claiming he won't be tempted to pull on a Maroons jersey again after next month's State of Origin series decider.

Lockyer is looking forward to retirement but hopes to go out with a bang on July 6 before embarking on a finals tilt with the fifth-placed Brisbane Broncos.

"No (I haven't had any second thoughts about my retirement)," Lockyer said ahead of Friday night's clash with South Sydney in Perth.

"Every Origin game is important and I guess just because this is my last one it doesn't make it any more special than the others.

"The series is hard to win and Queensland has had a lot of success in the last five, six years.

"It would be nice to finish on a really good note. The team has done some great things, and if it's able to do six (series triumphs on the trot), then it's even better."

Lockyer is eager to take a well-earned rest after his playing career is over and ruled out the prospect of coaching a Perth-based NRL franchise if they were to gain entry in 2013.

"I'm just focusing on playing at the moment and I'm looking forward to, when I retire, getting out of that week-in, week-out pressure," the 34-year-old said.

Lockyer hopes Johnathan Thurston's presence for Origin three would help turn the tide Queensland's way after the Maroons' surprise 18-8 loss to NSW in game two.

Thurston was facing a two-game ban for making contact with a referee during the Cowboys' win over the Warriors last weekend, but was freed for Origin duty when found not guilty by the NRL judiciary on Wednesday night.

"JT's greatest strength is his competitiveness," Lockyer said.

"Other than his talent, in those big games he's going to be there knocking on the door for 80 minutes.

"I guess that's important.

"I think everyone was a little bit worried (when he was cited) but overall I think they were pretty confident he'd get off.

"So the right decision came down for Queensland and hopefully he will be there next week."

Stand-in South Sydney captain Michael Crocker is only an outside chance to earn a Maroons recall for the Origin decider.

But the 31-year-old said he would love nothing more to take part in Lockyer's Origin farewell.

"Oh I'd love to," Crocker said.

"I think it's going to be a very emotional night for, not just Darren, but all of Queensland because of what he's done over the last 15 or so years.

"He's been a great role model for all of Queensland and I'd love to be there.

"Locky ... (can I be) 19th man, 18th man or something?"

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