New year, new AFL focus for Lions skipper

Ed Jackson
Dayne Zorko and Brisbane have set their sights on improving on their showing last season

A new year has brought a new focus for Brisbane captain Dayne Zorko.

The 30-year-old got his first taste of AFL finals last year as he led the Lions to a remarkable top-four finish.

As memorable as that campaign was, Zorko says he and his teammates have had to move on to better those achievements in 2020.

The Lions' first finals series in a decade ended in a straight-sets exit and while Zorko said the sting of the way the season concluded gives some inspiration to do better, just going from hunter to hunted will provide challenge enough.

"There'll be times where we certainly use that as motivation but in terms of the season, wins and losses and all that, that's put to bed," Zorko said.

"It's a new season, new competition, teams get better every year and we need to keep following that trend.

"We need to strive to get better and that's something that we've focused heavily on.

"Wins and losses are irrelevant now from last year, it's all about what we can do this year."

The Lions head into the new season without the on-field presence of Luke Hodge.

The four-time premiership player has retired after a successful two-season stint with the Lions where he was a valuable leadership aide to Zorko and mentor to several of the team's rising stars.

Zorko said Hodge's legacy would be the depth of leadership skills he'd help impart on the squad.

"Our leadership group will probably be announced in the next few weeks and there'll be some new guys in there that step up and take control," he said.

"I'd like to think that Hodgey's left an impact on the whole group, not just necessarily the backline players that he's worked with.

"We've added guys like Cam Ellis-Yolmen, been in the system a long time; Grant Birchall - premiership player four times.

"So we've added some great experience, some great leadership qualities back into our side as well.

"The development of our young players is only getting better."