English Rugby
Robshaw: Lancaster is the right man
ESPNscrum Staff
March 19, 2012
The England coaching trio celebrate the win, England v Ireland, Six Nations, Twickenham, England, March 17, 2012
England boss Stuart Lancaster celebrates victory over Ireland with Graham Rowntree and Andy Farrell © Getty Images

England skipper Chris Robshaw has backed interim coach Stuart Lancaster to take the reins of the national side full-time.

The former Leeds flanker oversaw big strides as England finished the Six Nations in second place - behind Grand Slam-winning Wales - and his captain is in no doubt about who should lead the team towards the Rugby World Cup in 2015.

Flanked by assistant coaches Andy Farrell and Graham Rowntree, Lancaster did a great deal to repair England's reputation after a disastrous World Cup in 2011.

"Stuart's been fantastic and I think it shows in the way we've played so far," Robshaw said. "A lot of [our success] is down to Stuart and his coaching team.

"They've come in and they've been their own men and created a culture so that we want to go out there and play for each other, ourselves and the country and everyone who comes to watch us and support us. I think he is the right man.

"He's created the right environment and it has shown that the players are going out there and playing for him. It's about whoever your boss is you have to back them and believe in the game plan they have put out there.

"He's kept everyone in their place and connected with all the players and that's the most important bit. We want to go out and play for him."

Lancaster has also received public backing from Alex Corbisiero and Toby Flood following the side's turnaround in form. Robshaw believes continuity is key ahead of England's next challenge - a summer tour to South Africa in June - but Lancaster is battling with former Springbok boss Nick Mallett for the top job.

"Stuart said quite early on that he wants to rebuild a team and make sure the players will be up for the challenge ahead," Robshaw said.

"Come the 2015 World Cup in England, we want to make sure we're the best side in the world and that's the aim and that's not something that is going to happen overnight. Going to South Africa is never going to be easy. Playing them at home is hard enough never mind going into their back yard with three Test games and a couple of midweek ones.

"It is going to be very difficult so if we can keep some continuity that will help us and the way we're playing now. It showed against Ireland we have progressed a long way in eight weeks. We've taken massive strides forwards.

"If you look at our performance against Scotland that was about going out there and getting a win and we've gone out there six to eight weeks later and put on a full performance in bad conditions."

Robshaw did warn fans not to expect miracles immediately, insisting that the building blocks would take time to come together.

"Stuart's plan will take weeks and years to get going but I think he's put us in the right light," Robshaw said. "If we look back eight weeks and think if we were given second place and eight points, would we have taken that? Of course we would. Considering we haven't really played together and some guys we haven't really been in contact with before I think we've taken massive strides forward."

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