Rugby league supercoach Wayne Bennett has endorsed Daly Cherry-Evans as the Maroons' next State of Origin captain, labelling him the logical choice.
Manly talisman Cherry-Evans has quickly become the frontrunner to replace the retired Greg Inglis as Queensland skipper, despite only earning a recall to the team in Game III last year.
A Sea Eagles captain at club level, Cherry-Evans told AAP earlier this week he was ready to take the throne at the Maroons if asked.
And Bennett, who coached Queensland in seven series across three separate stints, collecting five titles, on Thursday backed the call.
"It's a big decision for Queensland, it's got to be the right decision," Bennett said.
"But for me he is the logical guy. I like his calmness and demeanour on the field.
"He's been at a club that has been through a couple of tough years. They started the season tough.
"I just like captains to be calm and other players to know they're not panicking, so why should I panic? He seems to have a really good rapport with his playing group as well. They listen to him."
Bennett joked on Thursday it was "a tough time to come to Sydney" as Rabbitohs coach, given the Maroons' predicament.
Queensland are facing a leadership shortage given Cameron Smith, Johnathan Thurston, Cooper Cronk, Billy Slater and Inglis have all walked away from representative football in the past two years.
Cherry-Evans is one of the few players that can be confident of an Origin spot who captains his side at club level.
Michael Morgan has leadership experience at the Cowboys but will likely feature in the centres, while Matt Scott and Jake Friend aren't incumbents.
But with Cherry-Evans firing for Manly over the opening month of the season, Bennett liked the fact he played a central position.
"We just played (Cherry-Evans) recently so I watched him a lot on video and his form has been great, he plays the key position of halfback," Bennett said.
"To me he is the logical choice. I don't think the others are quite there yet. He would be my captain."
Australian Associated Press