Simon Mannering says it’s an honour to lead the Warriors, but he’ll step aside as skipper if it’s best for the team.
The Warriors’ seven-match losing streak, which has dropped them from the top four on the NRL ladder to missing the playoffs for a fourth consecutive season, has put his captaincy under scrutiny.
Mannering says he’s not surprised it’s become a talking point, given how the club have gone.
He says he never believed he owned the job when he took over from Steve Price before the 2010 season and he just wants the Warriors to do well.
“It’s a huge honour and I’m very proud to have it, but I’m never going to be one to kick up a stink or demand I have that role,” he said.
“I just want the club to be successful and this group to be successful, so if that means I’m captain or not, it doesn’t really bother me.”
Mannering, 29, has had success as skipper at both international and club level.
He led the Kiwis to victory in the 2014 Four Nations and in this year’s Anzac Test, and the Warriors to the 2011 grand final.
But his heavy workload year on year with both the Warriors and Kiwis has also led to questions about whether he should skip New Zealand’s end-of-year tour of England and give his body a breather.
Mannering, who is set to finish the 2015 NRL season having played in all 24 games for the Warriors, wants to go on tour if picked.
“It’s been a long few seasons and, when things aren’t going well, people tend to dissect things a lot closer,” he said.
“I’m sure if we were winning games, they wouldn’t be saying that.
“I love playing for the Kiwis and love playing for the Warriors and, as long as I’m fit to be picked, I’ll be more than happy to play.”