Six Nations 2013: Lancaster wants leaders to aid England’s Robshaw
Six Nations 2013: England head coach Stuart Lancaster wants to create a team of leaders to aid captain Chris Robshaw
Stuart Lancaster say he is determined to create a team of leaders to aid incumbent captain Chris Robshaw, having announced his squad for next month’s Six Nations.
The 43-year-old was speaking at the announcement of the England senior and Saxons elite player squads at his local rugby club, West Park RFC in Leeds.
Uncapped duo Billy Twelvetrees and Calum Clark were named in the 33-man squad for the Six Nations, while Joe Launchbury, Tom Youngs and Mako Vunipola were promoted to the senior side.
Lancaster strongly hinted Harlequins flanker Robshaw will captain the side in the tournament for the second time, but insisted they are developing future candidates for the job.
“We are going to name the captain with two weekends to go,” said Lancaster. “Don’t expect any surprises.
“We do need to develop other leaders within the team.
“When Chris Robshaw injured his thumb and was out of the side against South Africa, Dylan (Hartley) captained the side.
“Dylan is obviously one person and Tom Woods is another person who naturally leads, while one of the key leaders in the Autumn Internationals was Geoff Parling, who was excellent.
“Gone are the days when the captain controls the game, it’s actually about a team of decision makers and leaders within it.
“Clearly it’s an important role but it’s not the only role and we’ve always tried to develop this group of players, and the more we spend time with them, the more we think they will develop.”
Though Lancaster highlighted the importance of consistency in team selection, the former Leeds Carnegie coach maintained his players will be fighting for their place in every position.
“There is an element of consistency of selection that should run through to the Six Nations, but that’s not to say that those who impress us in the camp can’t come through,” he added.
“If you make selection a pre-determined process then you get complacency from the players and frustration from the guys that aren’t playing.
“We want to have the players fighting for the shirt and there will certainly be competition.”
© Sportsbeat 2012