The Western Force has today finalised a five-man leadership group for 2019, headed for the second consecutive year by captain Ian Prior.

The team held leadership exercises in the last few months where the players voted for who they wanted to lead in 2019.

Coach Tim Sampson said he is really excited for the leadership group to come together and see what they accomplish this year.

“I was very keen for the players to select their own leadership group this year,” Sampson said.

“We recently conducted a group exercise which commenced with the players putting their heads together to come up with “hot words” in what they perceived to be key qualities in a leader.

“After discussing the key qualities, we then went to a player vote and what was really encouraging was that the votes were spread across the squad.

“That itself is extremely encouraging as it highlights where we are at as a squad, and as I have mentioned previously we need 33 players to display leadership qualities if we want to be successful.”

Sampson said he was impressed by the process in which the team voted for and selected their own leaders.

“We discussed how it was important not to select players on reputation, to consider who they thought would meet their words that they came up with and then to have the comfort knowing that they are the players that will genuinely represent them this year.”

“The players voted in for the 2019 Leadership Group are Heath Tessmann, Jeremy Thrush, Brad Lacey, Marcel Brache and Captain Ian Prior.”

Great choice of leadership group with real experaince there. Also a bit of a side note, great to see how Brad Lacey has really grown and developed both as a player and a leader under the new force.