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Last Updated: Wednesday, 25 July 2007, 21:22 GMT 22:22 UK
Sculthorpe quits as Lions skipper
Paul Sculthorpe
Sculthorpe's time as captain has been badly hit by injuries
Paul Sculthorpe has resigned as Great Britain captain but has not ruled out a return to playing internationals.

Sculthorpe, 29, was named captain in 2005, but played only 18 minutes of 10 Tests because of injuries and decided to quit to prolong his club career.

He told BBC Sport: "Since I got the captaincy I've hardly been able to do the job because of injury.

"I'm not saying I'll never play for Great Britain again but at the moment it's not a priority."

Sculthorpe, who has won 26 Lions caps since making his debut in Papua New Guinea in 1996, said he made the decision before rupturing an Achilles tendon last month.

606: DEBATE
Blakbruker

"It was a big decision but I made it a while ago," Sculthorpe said. "Getting the Great Britain captaincy and not having a run was a big disappointment.

"Since I got the post it was a bit of a jinx for me. I only led the team out once.

"My main aim is to get back on track, get fit again and to play to my potential and the time I have to put in is with my club."

He has been involved in some memorable victories at international level and has been admired and respected by both opponents and team-mates

RFL executive chairman Richard Lewis

The rugby league World Cup is being held in Australia at the end of 2008 and Sculthorpe has already said he could be prepared to return to internationals before then.

"(Great Britain coach) Tony Smith has already asked me if I would be prepared to play again if I got back to form.

"If things are going well I'll no doubt make myself available to Great Britain."

Rugby League executive chairman Richard Lewis said: "We understand and respect his decision. He had in fact informed us of his intentions some weeks ago.

"Paul has played for Great Britain and England with great distinction and appeared in Test series, Tri-Nations and World Cup tournaments.

"He has been involved in some memorable victories at international level and has been admired and respected by both opponents and team-mates.

"We wish him all the very best for the remainder of his club career."

Sculthorpe has backed Jamie Peacock as his replacement as Great Britain skipper saying: "Jamie leads by example and always raises his game."

SEE ALSO
Sculthorpe may return this season
12 Jun 07 |  St Helens
Sculthorpe 'out for the season'
11 Jun 07 |  My Club
Scully's return
24 Feb 07 |  Rugby League


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