Zorko: All that changes is I flip the coin
WHEN Dayne Beams handed the Lions' captaincy to lifelong friend Dayne Zorko this week he didn't just force a new inscription on Brisbane's honour board, but also the record books at the Gilston State School.
The school in the Gold Coast hinterland now owns a piece of history as the first in Queensland to produce two AFL captains.
And that isn't its only record. Alumni John William McLaren was the first Queenslander to play Test cricket for Australia when he took on the Poms in the Fifth Ashes test at the SCG in 1912.
When the school produced its 125-year celebration book in 2006, Zorko's older brother Beau was more prominent, having represented Australia at indoor cricket.
At that stage the two Daynes' career highs were representing Queensland at national schoolboy carnivals.
The school's biggest star was Ben Ikin, the youngest player to debut for the maroons in State-of-Origin.
If they produce another book for the 150th anniversary, you would imagine the two classmates who went on to be multiple club champions, All-Australians and in Beams' case a premiership player with Collingwood in 2010, will feature much more prominently.
"It is incredible, out the back of the Hinze dam there, who would have thought,'' he said.
"It might be a hunting ground for AFL players, it's pretty cool.''
Zorko, who will captain the Lions against Sydney on Saturday, says he and Beams had leaned on their friendship a lot this season in the wake of the passing of Philip Beams.
Zorko paid tribute to Beams' courage in delivering a heartfelt message about his battles with grief to Lions fans via the club website and also said he felt personally confident in taking over the reins thanks to the advice and encouragement he had received from his former captain.
"I'm really proud of him for the way he came out and held himself together and was able to say that,'' he said.
"He's really proud of the way I've been able to help him through this period as well.
"I think, for myself personally, not a lot changes, all I will do differently is flip the coin and lead the boys out because everything I've been doing I've been doing at a really high standard and he has certainly recognised that and informed me of that.''
He said he would have no hesitation stepping down the moment Beams decides he is ready to resume his role.
"Absolutely, he's the captain of the football club, he was voted by the players as well, which is special,'' he said.
Zorko also said his leadership had improved "significantly" since the arrival of Luke Hodge who had taught him the value of listening to team mates.
"I feel like I've certainly changed the way I look at things," Zorko said.
"I've been able to listen a lot more which I think is a really good leadership quality.''