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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 January, 2004, 15:20 GMT
Dallaglio reclaims captaincy
Larence Dallaglio celebrates World Cup success
Dallaglio has won 65 caps
Lawrence Dallaglio has been named as England's new rugby union captain.

The 31-year-old Wasps number eight takes over from Martin Johnson, who has retired after leading England to World Cup success in Australia.

Dallaglio, who has won 65 caps, has been given the job on a game-by-game basis, starting with the Six Nations opener in Italy in 15 February.

"In my opinion Lawrence is the stand out choice for Italy," said England coach Sir Clive Woodward.

Dallaglio captained England 14 times before being forced to resign in May 1999 following newspaper allegations.

It's a huge honour and privilege and Martin has certainly set a high standard
Lawrence Dallaglio
He gets the nod ahead of other captaincy candidates including fellow forwards Phil Vickery, Richard Hill, Neil Back and Ben Kay as well as Jonny Wilkinson and Matt Dawson.

"I was in the fortunate position of having a lot of outstanding players to consider to follow in the footsteps of Martin Johnson, who was always going to be such a hard act for any player to follow, both on the pitch and in his leadership qualities," Woodward added.

"Many players have proven to me they could do the job but in my opinion Lawrence is the stand out choice for Italy.

"I'm really pleased for him and I am confident he will be excellent in the role. As always I will be appointing the captain on a game by game basis, a philosophy I've maintained since I've been in charge."

LAWRENCE DALLAGLIO FACTFILE
Born: 10 Aug 1972
Position: Number eight
Club: Wasps
Test caps: 65
Test points: 70
Tests as captain: 14
Debut: v South Africa 1995
Dallaglio admitted he is thrilled to be taking the armband again.

"I'm very pleased to accept this responsibility," he said. "It's a huge honour and privilege and Martin has certainly set a high standard.

"He is a world-class player and is a great loss to England but I respect his decision to retire.

"All teams move on and evolve and England is no exception. The priority is to get selected on form, that's paramount. I see playing well as the key to success and captaining your country is very special indeed."

Woodward has selected 29 of the 31 players used during the World Cup campaign in a 43-man squad.

Paul returns

The exceptions are the retired Johnson and Perpignan wing Dan Luger, who has been omitted by mutual consent in order to give him more time to settle in France.

"He is in no way out of the picture with England and will be seriously considered for the future," Woodward stressed.

Among those returning to the squad are Leicester prop Graham Rowntree and Gloucester's Henry Paul, while the uncapped Chris Jones and Matt Stevens are included.

Five players named - Stuart Abbott, Mike Tindall, Charlie Hodgson, Lewis Moody and Julian White - will definitely miss the Italy match due to injury

Jonny Wilkinson and Mike Catt, also currently sidelined, will be reassessed next week, while Sale Sharks hooker Andy Titterrell is suspended and unavailable for opening matches.


England training squad for RBS Six Nations:

Backs: I Balshaw (Bath), B Cohen (Northampton), J Lewsey (Wasps), J Robinson (Sale), J Simpson-Daniel (Gloucester); S Abbott (Wasps), M Catt (Bath), W Greenwood (Harlequins), J Noon (Newcastle), H Paul (Gloucester), O Smith (Leicester), M Tindall (Bath); O Barkley (Bath), P Grayson (Northampton), C Hodgson (Sale), A King (Wasps), J Wilkinson (Newcastle, vice captain); K Bracken (Saracens), M Dawson (Northampton), A Gomarsall (Gloucester).

Forwards: M Regan (Leeds), A Titterrell (Sale), S Thompson (Northampton), D West (Leicester); J Leonard (Harlequins), G Rowntree (Leicester), M Stevens (Bath), P Vickery (Gloucester, vice captain), J White (Leicester), T Woodman (Gloucester), S Borthwick (Bath), D Grewcock (Bath), C Jones (Sale), B Kay (Leicester), T Palmer (Leeds), S Shaw (Wasps), N Back (Leicester), M Corry (Leicester), L Dallaglio (Wasps, captain), R Hill (Saracens), L Moody (Leicester), A Sanderson (Sale), J Worsley (Wasps).


WATCH AND LISTEN
BBC Sport's Joe Wilson
"Dallaglio insists he is not just a stop-gap measure"


Lawrence Dallaglio
"I've got some big shoes to fill"



SEE ALSO
England's casualty list
28 Jan 04  |  Internationals


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