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Auto Poster Players don't need 'hands held' - ex-Kiwis coach Graham Lowe backs Michael Maguire's no...

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  1. Stuff News Articles

    Stuff News Articles Auto Poster

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    Players don't need 'hands held' - ex-Kiwis coach Graham Lowe backs Michael Maguire's no captain call


    MARVIN FRANCE

    Last updated 17:03, June 13 2018

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    Graham Lowe says Michael Maguire won't have to wait long for a leader to emerge.


    Graham Lowe comes from the old school so you would be forgiven for thinking that the former Kiwis coach would not be on board with Michael Maguire's rather new-age idea of not appointing a captain for his first test in charge.

    On the contrary, Lowe believes it could be a masterstroke as the national side opens a new era against England in Denver next week.

    "I think it's a really good idea. It's a little bit different and it puts the onus on all of the players," Lowe told Stuff.

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    Kiwis coach Michael Maguire has opted not to appoint a captain for the test against England.


    "You're talking about a squad full of first grade players so they shouldn't need their hand held by a captain, they've got their individual roles to do in any case."

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    While 2017 World Cup skipper Adam Blair will lead the team out onto the field at Mile High Stadium, Maguire has made the surprising choice of to appointing an official captain for the match.

    The hope is that leaders will naturally emerge throughout the build-up to stake their claim for the position for the tests against Australia, England and France at the end of the year.

    Lowe is confident that Maguire will not have to wait long.

    "I call it the bloke in the dinner suit," said Lowe, who also had stints in charge of Queensland, Manly and Wigan. "Someone who will just get it done with a minimum of fuss and doesn't need to have the 'c' beside his name. He just makes it work.

    "Often he will come from a direction that some coaches may not have thought of. But the guy in the dinner suit will always emerge."

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    Maguire's decision could be seen as somewhat of a risk given the number of veteran players already ruled out of selection.

    Former captains Jesse Bromwich (hamstring) and Benji Marshall (calf) are both unavailable through injury while doubts remain about Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (ankle) and Kieran Foran (toe).

    Ex-skipper Simon Mannering's decision to retire from test football, along with props Ben Matulino and Russell Packer, will also force Maguire to blood several fresh faces, with Penrith back-rower Corey Harawira-Naera and Wests Tigers centre Esan Masters among the frontrunners to earn maiden call-ups.

    Lowe has no concerns over a lack of experience, though.

    After watching the 11 debutants spur New South Wales to victory in game one of State of Origin last week, he believes an injection of youth could do exactly the same for the Kiwis.

    "New South Wales have demonstrated that you have to have faith in the younger players coming through.

    "The Kiwis are just about spoiled for choice. The thing that was missing last time (at the World Cup) was the professional attitude amongst the players and that's the thing that has to be addressed. I'm sure that's part of Michael Maguire's reasoning for looking for natural leaders to emerge."

    Meanwhile, Lowe said he was not pursuing the independent position on the Warriors board, but would consider the role if approached by the new owners.

    After helping Carlaw Heritage Trust chairman Cameron McGregor through the purchase of the club from Eric Watson, McGregor nominated Lowe to be one of the Trusts' representatives on the board only to be rejected by the trustees.

    On Wednesday, Bruce Cameron, Kevin McDonald, Cameron McGregor and Selwyn Pearson were confirmed as the four board directors for the Carlaw Heritage Trust, while co-owners Autex will be represented by Rob Croot and Mark Robinson.

    An independent director is yet to appointed and McGregor told Stuff recently that he was hopeful that Lowe could fill that position.

    "I've had plenty of talks with Cameron, Mark and Rob and they understand and know my thinking," Lowe said. "If they feel it's something they'd like me to consider I will consider it. But it's honestly gone no further than that.

    "One way or another it doesn't matter. I just want them to do well."

    - Stuff

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