Player of the year Richie Myler says he is honoured to have been named Leeds Rhinos captain for the Boxing Day showdown with Wakefield Trinity.
Myler is set to feature at the end of a year when he stood out for Rhinos in their battle against relegation and was recalled to the England Test side.
The Wetherby Whaler Festive Challenge is a big occasion for Rhinos with Emerald Headingley’s new South Stand due to be officially opened before kick-off.
“It is a huge honour,” Myler said of skippering the team.
“I am very humbled and I can’t wait to get my boots on and get out there.
“Pre-season has been tough so it’ll be nice to get a game under our belts.
“There should be a big crowd and I am looking forward to being in front of the new South Stand and seeing what the atmosphere is like.”
Rhinos finished ninth in the 2018 regular Betfred Super League table, but Myler has higher expectations under new boss David Furner.
He said: “I am enjoying pre-season and the new stuff Dave’s come in with.
“Everyone else is buying into it and really enjoying it.
“The new lads have settled in well and they are great additions so hopefully we can have a good year.”
The former Warrington man will play alongside half-back partner Tui Lolohea for the first time next week.
“He’s a good player,” Myler added.
“He has shown some really good skills in training and he’s a great lad to have around.
“I’m chomping at the bit to see how he goes on Boxing Day.”