TIM SPEARS has hailed new York City Knights captain Chris Clarkson and believes he will do an “exceptional job” as skipper.

Spears stepped down from his role as captain during the off-season, having held the armband since moving to York from Featherstone Rovers in 2017.

Succeeding Spears as skipper from the 2021 season is former Leeds Rhinos, Hull KR and Castleford Tigers back-rower Clarkson, who has been a mainstay in the Knights’ forward pack since his move before the 2020 campaign began.

Clarkson has the full backing of his predecessor Spears and the 36-year-old says the entire dressing room is behind the new captain.

“Chris is an exceptional player and he’s a fantastic leader,” enthused Spears. “He’s probably a little bit quieter in his actions than I was and I could get myself a little bit excited sometimes.

“But he’s got the utmost respect of the dressing room, he leads by example, he works exceptionally hard and I think the boys have a massive amount of respect for him.

“Yes, Chris is the captain and he’s absolutely respected by all the boys, but whoever has got the captain’s armband, when you look around, there’s Danny Kirmond, who’s captained a Super League team before for a number of years, Ryan Atkins has played a lot in Super League as has Danny Washbrook, and there’s myself who’s been captain before.

“Brendan (O’Hagan) has come in and he’s a very dominant half-back too.

“We’ve got a number of leaders across the board and good leaders in good positions.

“Chris is the captain and he leads by example in a number of ways and I know he will do an exceptional job.

“He’s got everyone’s support, including mine.”