Dawes, Byrnes join Demon leaders

Written By Unknown on Jumat, 18 Januari 2013 | 14.43

Former Magpie Chris Dawes joins Melbourne pre-season training. Picture: Wayne Ludbey Source: Herald Sun

MELBOURNE recruits Chris Dawes and Shannon Byrnes have walked straight into the Demons' leadership group for 2013.

The Dees announced today they would have a nine-player leadership group this season, with youngsters Jack Grimes and Jack Trengove to continue as co-captains.

The other addition to last year's leadership team is 22-year-old midfielder Jordie McKenzie.

The full group is: Grimes (co-captain), Trengove (co-captain), Nathan Jones (vice-captain), Shannon Byrnes, Mitch Clark, Chris Dawes, James Frawley, Colin Garland and McKenzie.

Clint Bartram (retired) and ruckman Mark Jamar are the two members of the 2012 leadership group that are not part of this year's group.

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Coach Mark Neeld said the changes reflected strong competition among the playing group for leadership positions.

Players were chosen based on input from coaches, players and senior staff assessing players on 10 leadership categories including character and competitiveness.

"Jordie McKenzie continues his great story, coming from the rookie list to where he is now. Jordie's work ethic, competiveness and attention to detail have earned him this position," Neeld said.

"We are also pleased at the impact of Shannon Byrnes and Chris Dawes since their arrival. Their leadership and experience was one of the reasons we pursued them during the free agency and trade periods.

"Both Jack Grimes and Jack Trengove experienced a challenging year in 2012, but in their first year as captains, we were very happy with their development and have full confidence that this will continue in 2013."

Neeld said Jamar was disappointed to miss out on this year's leadership group but "handled it like a professional".

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