Lyon not planning retirement just yet
Manly Sea Eagles skipper Jamie Lyon knows his glittering career is coming to an end, but says he still has the drive to keep playing for his beloved club beyond 2016.
The two-time premiership-winning Sea Eagle is off contract at the end of this year, and knows any new deal would almost certainly be his last in the NRL.
Having played 212 games for the northern beaches side, there is little Lyon hasn’t done in a rugby league career that has included two premierships, 10 State of Origin caps and eight games for the Kangaroos.
The 34-year-old says he has thought about retirement, but admits he'd play on next year if the club offered him a deal.
"It (retirement) won't be too far away. Hopefully I'll keep improving this year and get a bit better and hopefully go on next year or something like that," Lyon said.
"But it's just in the process at the moment and we'll see how we go. We'll see what money they've got in the salary cap and if there are spots available and that sort of thing.
"It's pretty complex to work out a full squad, but if the opportunity is there I'll definitely like to go again."
Lyon said the emergence of Tom Trbojevic and other young stars at the club wouldn't influence his playing future, with his decision set to come down to instincts.
"I think it's more of an individual thing. It's more on yourself and how the body's going and your performances," the Sea Eagles centre said.
"If you're fine then you keep playing. Some people go a bit early, and some play on a bit longer. It's all up to the individual."
Manly's captain paid thanks to the work done by the club's new head of physical performance, Dan Ferris, for helping senior players like himself, Steve Matai and Brett Stewart cope with the weekly bumps and bruises first-grade football provides.
The former Gold Coast Titans strength and conditioning coach joined the Sea Eagles ahead of the 2016 season, and Lyon said his influence had been telling.
"He does a lot of work. All the staff, they put their hands up and get their hours done," Lyon said.
"He's a very smart operator, Dan, and for us older guys who might need a bit more of a rest here and there, they're pretty switched on and good to train under.
"It's enjoyable to come to training and work under some of these guys and hear some different ideas on things, whereas we were used to some other voices for a few years, so it's a bit of a change-up there."
Asked whether the new strength and conditioning team could prolong his career, Lyon laughed: "Ask me in two years if I'm still going around."