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Lawrence Dallaglio: Eddie Jones must drop player to win the 2019 World Cup

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Lawrence Dallaglio feels that England head coach Eddie Jones must drop Dylan Hartley from the national side if they are to repeat their 2003 success in 18-months' time.

The 2019 World Cup in Japan is nearing ever closer, with the tournament scheduled to kick-off next September, and former World Cup winner Dallaglio isn't convinced that the current crop have what it takes to secure another historic victory to match England's achievement 15-years ago.

Having flattered to deceive so far in the Six Nations, England will look to get their campaign back on track next Saturday, when they travel to Paris, where France lie in wait.

Skipper Dylan Hartley's recent performances have come under criticism, and following on from last Saturday's 25-13 defeat to Scotland away at Murrayfield in the Calcutta Cup, Dallaglio has questioned whether Jones should drop the New Zealand-born hooker, who was withdrawn from the fiery encounter early on into the match. 

"Jones still has a lot of thinking to do. First, he must work out whether it makes sense to continue with Hartley as captain," Dallaglio wrote in The Sunday Times.

"England have done well under the hooker's leadership: 24 wins from 26 test matches is a formidable record. Ideally, the captain should be one of the team's strongest players but Hartley is not. He is often one of the first players to be substituted and, again, that is far from ideal."

The 45-year-old Dallaglio, who won 85 caps for England over 12-years (1995-2007), also believes that the Red Rose are lacking real leadership on the field of play and need significant elements of their playing set-up to be addressed, if they want to be successful in Japan. 

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He continued: "Since the World Cup started in 1987, every winning captain has been an exceptional leader and outstanding player; David Kirk, Nick Farr-Jones, Francois Pienaar, John Eales, Martin Johnson, John Smit and Richie McCaw. I'm not saying Hartley can't lead England to victory in Japan but to do so, he will have to break the mould.

"Issues have to be addressed because when you now put the pluses on one side and the minuses on the other, the bottom line is a team who do not look good enough to win the World Cup in Japan next year."

Should Eddie Jones drop Hartley for the match vs France? Let us know in the comments below!

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Topics:
Rugby Union
England Rugby
Dylan Hartley

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