Mitchell Pearce will step down as captain of the Newcastle Knights, effective immediately.
Earlier this week, Pearce met with Head Coach Adam O’Brien, CEO Philip Gardner and General Manager of Football Danny Buderus, to address recent events and to apologise for the distraction and inconvenience they have caused during the Christmas leave period.
Immediately following this meeting, Pearce met with his teammates and football department staff, to advise the group of his decision to relinquish the captaincy.
Pearce’s decision followed a lengthy review of current issues, last season’s performance and reflection upon the added pressure the captaincy brings to both his on field performance and personal life. The club is fully supportive of his decision.
The Knights will continue work to develop a new club leadership model, with a decision on new club leaders – including who will ultimately perform the role of captain – yet to be made.
Pearce will address his decision to step down as captain on his return to training tomorrow.
The Newcastle Knights are committed to respecting the privacy of their employees, including any discussion of private matters in the public domain. At the conclusion of tomorrow’s media opportunity, no further comment will be made on this matter.