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2013 British & Irish Lions
Lions legend tips Warburton for captaincy
ESPN Staff
December 19, 2012
Wales scrum-half Gareth Edwards passes the ball, Wales v Scotland, Five Nations, National Stadium, Cardiff, February 18, 1978
Gareth Edwards wants Sam Warburton to captain the Lions © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Gareth Edwards | Chris Robshaw | Sam Warburton
Tournaments/Tours: British and Irish Lions tour

British & Irish Lions legend Gareth Edwards has tipped Sam Warburton to lead the historic side on their tour of Australia in the summer but admits Chris Robshaw is also a contender.

Edwards was a key player for the Lions on their victorious 1971 and 1974 tours to New Zealand and South Africa respectively and also accrued 63 caps for Wales. And Edwards has backed Warburton to lead the Lions in the summer but admits that Wales' recent run of poor form may count against him. Wales are currently on a seven match losing run while England, in contrast, ended their autumn series on a high with a memorable win over the All Blacks.

A key member of that team was skipper Robshaw and Edwards believes that performance may put the England skipper ahead of Warburton in the pecking order for the Lions tour.

"If Sam can recapture the form he showed 12 months ago he'd be my choice, but should England build on that win over New Zealand Chris must come under consideration," Edwards told the Daily Mirror. "He's playing well, he's proved his ability against the very best and beating the All Blacks will have given England a tremendous amount of confidence.

"It has shown what this England team is capable of. England are very much the ones to watch in the Six Nations."

England received widespread praise for their performance against the All Blacks with Lions boss Warren Gatland heralding their "violent attitude to the breakdown". And Edwards believes that Gatland will decide who to pick to captain the Lions on form rather than reputation.

"I'm a big fan of Robshaw," Edwards said. "I like the way he's playing and I think he captained England particularly well. That win over New Zealand highlighted his capability, without any question.

"Equally, there's no doubt Sam at his best would be a fine leader - but it's been a tough autumn for Wales, who I thought looked somewhat jaded. Sam, I feel, is coming into a bit of form, but much depends on the Six Nations. Warren picks on form - not on reputation."

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