England coach Stuart Lancaster set to name captain for QBE Internationals
Last Updated: October 23, 2013 4:54pm
Chris Robshaw: Expected to retain the England captaincy
England coach Stuart Lancaster will name his captain for the QBE Internationals this afternoon with Chris Robshaw expected to be picked ahead of Tom Wood.
Lancaster is to have individual meetings with both players who are competing to be captain for the Tests against Australia, Argentina and New Zealand at Twickenham.
Robshaw is favourite to reclaim a role he last filled during the Six Nations before being rested for the summer tour to Argentina, allowing Wood to take over.
The performance of openside Matt Kvesic against the Pumas placed further pressure on Robshaw, with his claim to the No 7 jersey as well as the captaincy under scrutiny.
But a solid start to the season for Harlequins, combined with Kvesic's difficulties at Gloucester, has seen Robshaw claw back the initiative from Wood.
The likelihood of the 27-year-old starting against Australia on November 2 was also increased when Kvesic was among 10 players released back to their clubs.
Lancaster's squad for the autumn series convened in Leeds on Monday with Dave Attwood, Freddie Burns, Luther Burrell, Danny Care, Kyle Eastmond, Ben Foden, Alex Goode, Tom Johnson and Christian Wade joining Kvesic in returning to club duty.
"Under the terms of the elite player squad agreement we are releasing 10 players back, some of whom will play in the Premiership this weekend," Lancaster said.
"There are still places to play for and we won't finalise the side to play Australia until much closer to the game, not least because of the matches this coming weekend.
"It's a chance for those going back to stake a final claim for inclusion in the 23."
Lancaster stated two weeks ago at England's kit launch that he would be happy to continue with Robshaw."I have always been comfortable playing Chris at seven," he said.
"He has delivered for England on a consistent basis. No one can say in any of the games he has played for England, he didn't do that.
"There were areas of his game we wanted him, and he wanted, to work on - and I am certainly happy with what he is doing."