Rugby league: Johnathan Thurston backs Greg Inglis as Australia captain

  • 16/10/2018

Retired Kangaroos great Johnathan Thurston believes Greg Inglis should be reinstated as captain once he returns from suspension next year.

The Queensland captain had been named to skipper Australia against New Zealand last Saturday following Cameron Smith's representative retirement before being charged for speeding and drink driving.

The centre was stood down for two tests, meaning he will also miss Saturday's clash with Tonga in Auckland, but Thurston said should assume the post beyond that.

"Yeah definitely; I think he's the man for the job," Thurston said.

"We've seen what he did for the Maroons. In some of those games I thought he was the best on the paddock ... he leads by example.

"We all make mistakes and he's made one and owned up to it and no doubt he'll want to put it behind him and be better for it."

Boyd Cordner took the reins in Inglis' absence last Saturday as Australia were humbled 26-24 by an inspired New Zealand outfit.

Calling for more composure, Thurston said they would need to lift or face further embarrassment against a Tongan side with plenty to prove.

"I just think they lacked a bit of composure at times (against New Zealand)," he said.

"I felt like they were trying to win the game every time they made a line break (and were) pushing the pass.

"They'll (Tonga) be jumping out of their skin, very fired up and no doubt our boys will need to be a lot better than they were the other night."