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Stuart Lancaster believes Tom Wood is the right man to captain England this summer

Last Updated: 09/05/13 4:25am

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Tom Wood: Named as captain for England's summer tour

Tom Wood: Named as captain for England's summer tour

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Stuart Lancaster believes Tom Wood will do a "fantastic" job captaining England during their summer tour of Uraguay and Argentina.

The England coach has handed the flanker the responsibilities of leading the side in the absence of Chris Robshaw, who is one of a number of players rested.

"The (rested players) are aware that come September there's going to be more competition for places."
Stuart Lancaster

Chris Ashton, Danny Care, Toby Flood and Brad Barritt have also been given a break ahead of an intense two-year build-up to the 2015 World Cup.

Wood, who will skipper a squad that includes 11 uncapped players, nearly got the job last year before Robshaw was eventually given the nod.

"With Chris being rested and Dylan (Hartley) going with the Lions, Tom was the natural choice for me," Lancaster said.

"I am sure he will do a fantastic job as he has the respect of all the players and management and we are looking forward to other leaders developing in the absence of some senior players.

"He hasn't captained too many times in the past, but I've worked with him lots for the Saxons and obviously in the seniors now.

"People know he has an intensity and a will to win. His leadership style is very much, 'lead from the front and follow me'.

"We need that type of personality leading the side from the front in what is going to be a pretty hostile environment in Argentina."

Competition

With Matt Kvesic and Tom Johnson competing for the seven jersey on tour, Lancaster has made it clear Will Fraser and Luke Wallace are very much on his radar, which means more competition for Robshaw.

"The (rested players) are aware that come September there's going to be more competition for places.

"None of them turned round and said they didn't want to go but ultimately I made the decision and they all accepted it.

"I assured them it wasn't going to harm their long-term international careers by not going. I actually think it will benefit them."

Lancaster added: "Once they were reassured about that and once they reassured that if the Lions came and ask for them they'd be considered, they accepted my decision.

"It gives me the opportunity to look at other players in their position also, so it increases competition.

"The next big goal for England players - and it's a pretty big goal - is to try to win a World Cup in our own back yard. If anyone is struggling for motivation for that, they've got a problem."

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