Rockliff’s AFL future uncertain

Rockliff’s AFL future uncertain

Brisbane chief executive Greg Swann has offered no guarantee Tom Rockliff will remain as captain after the sacking of Justin Leppitsch.

Leppitsch has been removed as Lions coach after an unsuccessful three-season stint, despite having a year left on his contract.

As the club post-mortem begins, attention will inevitably turn to whether Rockliff will remain skipper under a new coach.

The 26-year-old is among Brisbane’s best players, but persistent rumours suggest his leadership style has caused problems with teammates.

A number of clubs are reportedly circling Rockliff, who is out of contract at the end of 2017, if he decides to leave or if the club moves him on.

Swann was reluctant to discuss the subject on Monday, but said nothing was off the table.

“It’s a bit too early to say. We’ll wait and see how that goes. Everything’s open for discussion,” he said.

Chairman Bob Sharpless also conceded player unrest was a contributing factor to Leppitsch’s axing.

He said Rockliff had broad but not unanimous support in the playing group, who made a presentation to the board last week.

“It’s fair to say there was some positives, there was some negatives,” Sharpless said.

“We had a presentation from a number of areas of the footy department and the players wanted to be included in that.

“There’s always a few not getting a game. Sometimes you’re not as keen on the coach as some of the younger ones that are.”

Swann said he didn’t know how the players reacted to the news because they were informed of the decision via email.

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