Hickey to Captain Auckland

Old Collegian and first five-eighths rugby player Simon Hickey has been named to captain Auckland for the 2015 season.

The 21-year-old is in his fourth campaign with Auckland and has previously captained the New Zealand Under 20 team.

“It means a huge deal to be named as captain of this team,” said Hickey.

“I never thought I would get this sort of opportunity, especially at such a young age. It’s really is a big honour.”

Hickey has played 26 matches for Auckland, scoring 165 points. In 2015, he is joined by older brother, Jono, in the Auckland squad.

 “The captaincy doesn’t change much in terms of how I’ll approach the season, I think the best captains just focus on playing well and leading by example.

“In this Auckland team I have been captained by Daniel Braid (another King’s College Old Collegian) Hadleigh Parkes and Tom McCartney. They are all great players and good guys, they led by putting the team first and I think that’s pretty important.”

Auckland Coach Paul Feeney says he has full confidence in Hickey’s ability to lead the team.

“Simon has a great understanding of the game and has obvious leadership qualities.”

“It will be his fourth campaign for Auckland and we are confident he will lead from the front and carry on the great work our Auckland captains have done in the past.

“He has a strong, young leadership group around him who are all excited about the season ahead,” said Feeney.

Prop Ofa Tu’ungafasi has been named as vice-captain.

Auckland kick off their campaign against Southland on Thursday, 13 August. Hickey is likely to miss this match through injury but is set to lead Auckland to the field for their first home match the following week, against defending champions, Taranaki.