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Sarries cult hero Barrington backs Itoje to captain England

By Peter Thompson
Maro Itoje on the charge for the British and Irish Lions against New Zealand

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Saracens cult hero Richard Barrington said “born leader” Maro Itoje should be the man to succeed Dylan Hartley as England captain.


Itoje has experienced a meteoric rise, already claiming more honours at the age of 22 than the majority of players could wish for in their entire career.

The versatile British and Irish Lions powerhouse captained England Under-20s to Junior World Championship glory in 2014 and also skippered Sarries in their Anglo-Welsh Cup final triumph two years ago.

Itoje has been undroppable since Eddie Jones handed him a debut off the bench against Italy in the Six Nations last year and his stock rose even higher on the Lions tour of New Zealand.

Barrington thinks England head coach Jones should look no further than Itoje to take over from Hartley when the time comes for a change of leadership. 

The prop told Omnisport: “I have played with Maro so many times and you just seen him going from strength to strength.

“Whether it is in the Premiership, Europe, playing for England or the Lions, you see his desperation to win and, that combined with his incredible ability, I honestly don’t know where he is going to stop.


“He is a born leader, he loves leading by example and taking responsibility, driving his team-mates on.

“He has experience of being captain at various levels and is made for it. His age really does not matter, as he demands that respect, gees players up and speaks very well in the dressing room.

“Obviously Eddie makes his decision on what is best for the team, but for me Maro should undoubtedly be the next England captain.”

– Richard Barrington was speaking at the Betsafe sponsor launch event with Saracens. For more information, visit



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Sarries cult hero Barrington backs Itoje to captain England