24 Sep 2011

Smith says Lockyer can hold his head high

1:33 pm on 24 September 2011

Melbourne's rugby league captain Cameron Smith says the Broncos skipper Darren Lockyer can look back on his Brisbane career with pride.

Lockyer's decision to pull out of Friday night's NRL preliminary final against Manly left his NRL future in the hands of his team-mates, who came up short, losing 26-14 at the Sydney Football Stadium as the injured five-eighth watched helplessly from the sidelines.

After saying he planned to play against Manly, just five days later having three plates inserted into his smashed left cheekbone, the 34-year-old took medical advice not to risk further injury in the Grand Final qualifier.

Smith says the outcome wouldn't tarnish a magnificent career, whichever way it went.