The Fremantle Dockers have today confirmed the club’s leadership group for 2012.

Matthew Pavlich, who became the club’s longest serving captain last year, will lead Fremantle for a sixth season in 2012.

The leadership group was voted on by the playing group and ratified by the match committee.

It includes Pavlich, Aaron Sandilands, Luke McPharlin, David Mundy, Matt de Boer and Hayden Ballantyne, who was elected to the leadership group for the first time in what will be his fourth season at Fremantle.

Senior coach Ross Lyon said each member of the group had important roles to play as leaders both on and off the field.

“They are the best modellers and defenders of our values and underpinning behaviours,” he said.

“Leadership occurs on a daily basis. I just want them to act daily and be leaders on and off the field.”

Pavlich said leading the Fremantle Football Club was a “tremendous honour”.

“It’s humbling to know my peers and the coaching group hold me in that esteem,” he said.

“I understand the responsibility that goes with the role and, hopefully, I can continue to develop and grow.”

Ballantyne also described his appointment to the leadership group as an honour.

“We have certain criteria that we hold ourselves to and I’ve worked as hard as I can to maintain those standards and it’s been noticed by the team,” he said.

The 24-year-old said he looked forward to stepping up in his new role in 2012.

“It means I get to help out the younger players and try to lead them the best way I can, and also to challenge the older players, too, like Pav (Pavlich) and Aaron Sandilands,” he said.

Lyon said that Ballantyne had impressed him since he was appointed Fremantle senior coach last year.

“All I’ve seen Hayden do is consistently train hard session in, session out,” he said.

“He displays a genuine care and interest for his teammates and the staff at the club. He’s really keen to make Fremantle successful and he certainly challenges teammates in the right manner for them to improve.

“It’s an exciting time for Hayden and the club because it means we are growing.”

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