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Michael Whiting  January 25, 2013 1:07 PM

AFL 2012 Rd 16 - Best of Round

Gary Ablett will captain the Suns for a third season

GARY Ablett will captain Gold Coast for the third straight season after the Brownlow Medallist was endorsed by the Suns’ board on Thursday night.

He will once again be supported by vice-captain Nathan Bock and deputy vice-captain Michael Rischitelli.

However, in a slight change from their first two seasons, the Suns have scrapped the leadership group in a favour of a broader leadership training program.

They will now offer all players a chance to develop their leadership skills with the hope of having a large number of players to choose from in the future.

Last year the seven-man leadership group included Karmichael Hunt and David Swallow.

“As the majority of our players transition into their third season, and now understand what it takes to play and prepare at the highest level, we have challenged them to take the next step on the leadership front,” football manager Marcus Ashcroft said.

“The leadership program will involve all players at different levels with an objective to develop a number of leaders and individual leadership capacity for the future.”

Suns’ player development manager Simon Fletcher will work closely with Gold Coast coaches Shaun Hart and Ben Mathews in delivering the program.

Michael Whiting covers Gold Coast news for Follow him on Twitter: @AFL_mikewhiting