Wallabies veteran Nathan Sharpe has reportedly been asked to delay his retirement for a third time to lead Australia on its end of year tour of Europe next month.
Reports online say Wallabies coach Robbie Deans and chief executive John O'Neill have asked Sharpe to stay on for the four-Test tour of Italy, France, England and Wales.
It is not known whether Sharpe, 34, has responded.
He had planned to retire at the end of the Super Rugby season but was persuaded to play in the three-Test home series against Wales and then again in the Rugby Championship due to injuries in Australia's second row stocks.
Former captains James Horwill and David Pocock are on track to return for the tour, which starts on November 3, but will be coming back from extended lay-offs.
Will Genia, who took over from Pocock when he tore his a ligament in his knee in the Sydney Bledisloe match, is out for a further five to eight months also with a knee injury he sustained in the Wallabies win over South Africa in Perth.
Without those senior players there are only two more players in the leadership group, James O'Connor and Pat McCabe.
O'Connor is hoping to be available for the final Bledisloe Test next weekend and McCabe has just returned from injury, although both could be viewed as too young for the captaincy at this stage.