NRL Rd 18 - Dragons v Raiders
NRL Rd 18 - Dragons v Raiders

Ben Hunt’s thoughts on captaining the Dragons

Central Queensland’s Ben Hunt says he is “honoured” and “grateful” to be captaining St George Illawarra in the NRL this year.

The 30 year old replaces Cameron McInnes who suffered a season-ending injury at training earlier this month.

The Dragons are being coached by Rockhampton’s Anthony ‘Hook’ Griffin, who previously coached Hunt during his four-year tenure at the Brisbane Broncos.

In a story published on the club’s website, Griffin said Hunt was the “ideal candidate” for the captaincy.

“Ben wanted this role for all the right reasons. His care factor for the club is extremely high and the added responsibility will be crucial to his ongoing performances,” Griffin said.

“This extra accountability will push him to continue being one of the competition’s best halfbacks.”

Hunt, who has played 65 games for the Dragons since joining them ahead of the 2018 season, said he had big shoes to fill following McInnes.

“He always led with his actions, Cam. That’s what made him such a great captain, he was always the best on the field,” he said.

“When ‘Hook’ asked me, I was a little bit surprised and didn’t really know what to make of it.

“He said take a few days and have a think about it. I had a couple of days where I probably couldn’t get to sleep at night.

“It’s a massive honour. It’s such a special club, there’s a lot of history at this club and to be named captain, I’m feeling pretty grateful.”

Hunt said he was determined to return the Dragons back to their former glory.

“Up until the last week, I’ve just been focusing on myself, trying to be better, the things I can control and improve.

“Once ‘Hook’ talked to me it started to sink in that I need to think a bit bigger than that and start trying to help a few other boys out.

“But I still need to be good myself, I think that’s still got to be my main priority. I need to perform every week and if I can do that then I think I’m doing my part as the captain and for my team.”

Hunt will lead the Dragons for the first time in Saturday’s annual Charity Shield against the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Mudgee.