Jones hails Robshaw role in England 'resurrection'


Eddie Jones has lavished praise on Chris Robshaw for playing a pivotal role in England's "resurrection" after suffering the personal heartbreak of losing the captaincy following their dismal Rugby World Cup showing.

Robshaw bore plenty of criticism in the aftermath of England's World Cup exit as they became the first host nation to be eliminated at the group stage.

The Harlequins forward then had to deal with media speculation surrounding the captaincy, with Jones - who replaced Stuart Lancaster as head coach in November - confirming Dylan Hartley as his new skipper prior to the Six Nations.

But Robshaw has been a key component in an England side that is on the brink of completing a Grand Slam following an exhilarating 25-21 win over Wales at Twickenham on Saturday, going some way to avenging their loss to Warren Gatland's men at the World Cup.

Jones has been impressed by the former skipper and tipped Robshaw to become the best blindside flanker in European rugby following his switch from openside.

"I think [the player I have most enjoyed watching] is Chris Robshaw. I think he's been absolutely outstanding," Jones told BBC Radio Five Llive. 

"He went through an enormous amount of hurt after the World Cup. To be splashed in the papers every day, basically the villain of English rugby, and then to have to endure the captaincy debate, which I obviously didn't help with but it was necessary.

"To come back and play such a pivotal role in the resurrection of the team I think is just outstanding. His general play is really solid, really workmanlike and his value to the team is absolutely enormous.

"It would have been easy for him to just go back to Harlequins and just ply his trade there, have a nice easy life, but he really wanted to continue playing for England and I think he's been absolutely fantastic.

"I've just given him a little bit of guidance, but the guidance I've given him is more what his new goals can be, he can be the best number six in European rugby.

"If you were picking a best Six Nations team now, he would definitely get in the team at number six."