Puopolo lauds Hawthorn's leadership pack
AFL: Despite being in the midst of pre-season without a captain, forward Paul Puopolo believes Hawthorn's leadership ranks are diverse and have plenty to offer heading into the 2019 campaign.
After two seasons at the helm, veteran key forward Jarryd Roughead made the decision to step down late last month.
While the club, which is currently enjoying a training camp on the Sunshine Coast, is yet to appoint his successor it's by no means due to a lack of options.
In fact, triple premiership forward Puopolo believes the Hawks are spoilt for choice with a robust contingent of rising leaders.
"We've had a real strong leadership group for a while now so with Roughy stepping out it's opened the door for some of the guys to step up," he said.
"We don't know who that is at this point in time but I think we've got that broad leadership group and have some really experienced guys that are probably not classed in that leadership group but can bring something as well.
"Hawthorn has got a really strong core and then all these younger guys are playing a bit of footy now where they're stepping up, like (James) Sicily, coming in and becoming leaders as well."
The Hawks battled through some soggy conditions at Maroochydore Multisports Complex on Friday and decided to forego a beach session early on Saturday to sweat it out indoors at Maroochydore Basketball Stadium.
Puopolo, who has been at Hawthorn since 2011 and was awarded life membership with the club last week, said he had been enjoying a positive pre-season.
"It's been good, I've started from scratch," he said.
"I've come out here and this is probably my first pre-season that I could actually start and have a really good crack at so I'm feeling really good and the body is feeling great.
"I'm just happy to be out there amongst it all and working hopefully towards some success and we'll just go from their."
He said newcomers to the club had mixed in well so far and were putting in the hard yards at training.
"They've all been really good and have come out here and all they want to do is work really hard and that's all we can ask of them," he said.
"The physical aspect is always important in this kind of camp and for us it's a bit of bonding and we've got a lot of new faces so for us it's getting that real team spirit."