Kaufusi backs Munster to lead Maroons
Melbourne forward Felise Kaufusi has backed his Queensland and club teammate Cameron Munster to captain the Maroons in this year's State of Origin series.
Last weekend's ankle injury to Manly star Daly Cherry-Evans has meant Munster's name is being seriously considered to lead Queensland against NSW.
Kaufusi said five-eighth Munster, who has played in three grand finals and is leading Dally M voting after seven rounds, has what it takes to captain his state if called upon.
"I think Munster is a good leader and he's shown that throughout games at the Storm," he said. "If he gets that he'll do a good job, so I'm looking forward to it if he does get the job.
"I think he's had to grow not having that (regular) halves partner there, which he's had the last couple of years.
"He's had to stand up a lot more so credit to him and I think he's still got a lot of improvement in that space and be a lot better."
The Storm back-rower said he is hopeful of retaining his Queensland spot after starting in all three Origin games last year.
"It would be nice, I'm not going to lie," he said.
"But first things first, I need to play good footy for my club week in and week out.
"Hopefully that's enough to put me in the spotlight."
Second-placed Storm will be looking for back-to-back wins when it meets arch rivals Cronulla at Shark Park on Friday night.
Melbourne has lost only once so far this season, and Kaufusi said there was no great secret to Storm's early season success.
"Probably the way they flog us in the pre-season goes to show," he said.
"You've probably heard all the stories about how we're one of the hardest working teams in the off-season. I think that goes to show on the footy park."