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Sam Warburton will captain Wales in this season’s autumn series of Tests.
Confirming Warburton’s role for November appointments with Australia, Argentina, Japan and South Africa, interim Wales head coach Rob Howley also underlined the 27-year-old’s British and Irish Lions captaincy credentials.
Cardiff Blues flanker Warburton, who has led Wales more than any other player, skippered the Lions on their Test series-winning tour to Australia in 2013, and is sure to be a leading candidate for next summer’s New Zealand trip.
“Sam Warburton is a great captain,” said Howley, who is in charge of Wales throughout this season while Lions head coach Warren Gatland concentrates on plotting the All Blacks’ downfall.
“He captained the Lions, he will continue to captain Wales. I have spoken to Sam already, and he will captain us for the autumn series and into the Six Nations.
“I believe at this moment in time that Sam Warburton is the best captain to take us forward.
“He has, of course, done it (led the Lions) once, and I am sure he is in other people’s thoughts to captain again, but the challenge for all players will be the autumn series and the Six Nations.”
England skipper Dylan Hartley is another strong Lions leadership contender, given his team’s run of nine successive victories under head coach Eddie Jones that included a Six Nations Grand Slam and 3-0 Test series triumph against Australia Down Under.
Howley, who has been part of Gatland’s coaching support staff since 2008, will have full responsibility for Wales this term.
He previously did the job in 2012-13 – again due to Gatland’s Lions commitments – and after losing five successive games, including all four autumn fixtures, Wales recovered to be crowned Six Nations champions.
Source Article from http://www.espn.co.uk/rugby/story/_/id/17624561/sam-warburton-named-wales-captain-autumn-internationals
Warburton to captain Wales in the autumn
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