Gold Coast SUNS co-captain Hannah Dunn is looking forward to learning and developing as the skipper of the club throughout season 2021, despite early nerves in her first game at the helm.

Dunn collected 12 disposals and laid four tackles in the round one loss to Melbourne but her teammates said her efforts off the ball had a big influence on the game.

“I was pretty nervous, I always am leading into Round 1 but then with the extra responsibility I was extra nervous,” she said.

“I’ve had a leadership role previously but at a local league so this is quite a big step up in terms of responsibility and being in an elite professional environment.

“I’ve learnt a lot off Leah (Kaslar) and Sally (Riley) for support, I know they aren’t in the leadership group but they have a lot to give and have provided me with some great advice and been really good in supporting me as well.”

Dunn is sharing the role with last year’s co-captain Sam Virgo, who shared duties with Leah Kaslar in 2020.

But she knows as long as she plays her role and remains as the person her players voted for, she’ll serve the group well.

“I think we both bring different values, she’s quite good at the hard conversations and I guess she’s really good at asserting authority and they’re probably my weaknesses and I want to get better at that,” she said.

“But I don’t want to become that … it’s about bringing what I bring and learning from her but not changing who I am because that’s why I got chosen in the role in the first place.

“On-field, I always will put the team first so playing my role for the team first, the rewards will come. I guess score wise it didn’t come for us in Round 1 but playing my role allows others to excel in theirs, I’m happy to do that, I don’t need the glory.”

Her first weekend wasn’t without its hurdles however, narrowly avoiding a nervous start to the season.

“I nearly forgot which way the toss went, that was the one thing Sam (Virgo) said, don’t forget which way we’re going.

“I ran out there and they tossed it and I was so nervous, I remember Daisy (Pearce) said ‘We’ll go that way’, so I worked out if she said that way it was away from her,” Dunn said.

“When I ran back to the huddle I said ‘That way’ and thought if I’ve got that wrong the girls will kill me but I won’t get it wrong now, I’ll be paying attention.”

The Gold Coast SUNS face Collingwood for Round 2 (Pride Round), at Victoria Park at 3:10pm AEDT, Saturday February 6.