Richmond will have a new skipper in season 2022 after triple premiership captain Trent Cotchin stepped down from the role.
Kane Cornes believes Brownlow Medallist and three-time Norm Smith Medallist Dustin Martin is ready to captain the Tigers after leading by example for several years.
CEO Brendon Gale has endorsed Martin’s leadership credentials, saying the 30-year-old is “absolutely” capable of replacing Cotchin as skipper.
SEN Breakfast co-host Sam Edmund isn’t sure whether Martin would feel comfortable with the extra media responsibilities and public appearances that comes with being captain, but Cornes disagrees.
“The more I think about it, I think Richmond are positioning Dustin Martin to be their next captain,” he told SEN Breakfast.
“He comes home from the airport and there’s cameras waiting for him. What extra scrutiny will be on Dustin Martin just because he’s got captain next to his name?
“I think he can do it in his own way, with those players around him. (Nick) Vlastuin, (Jack) Graham, (Dylan) Grimes, (Jack) Riewoldt, (Tom) Lynch – who’s been a captain in his own right. They’re there to do that. (Trent) Cotchin’s still there to do the heavy lifting.
“There’s something in me that says he’s done it all, Dustin Martin, imagine the legacy if he went on to be a premiership captain? It’s the only thing left for me.
“That’s the way I would go. I think he’s ready to go.”
Grimes would be Edmund’s choice to captain Richmond, but Cornes feels the defender doesn’t have the “aura” that someone like a Martin has.
“I wouldn’t be up in arms about that. He (Grimes) impresses me,” the Port Adelaide champion said.
“He did one of the best interviews I’ve ever heard, it was post last year’s Grand Final, we had him on the Sunday Footy Show. He’s quite vulnerable and quite open.
“He doesn’t look like a captain to me though. There’s something in me and it’s this gut feel about the aura of the best captains. Does Dylan Grimes have that? He doesn’t have it for me.”
Cotchin, 31, captained Richmond for 188 games across nine years, making him the club’s longest serving skipper.