Gareth Thomas says England skipper Dylan Hartley should lead the 2017 British and Irish Lions in New Zealand
Thomas says hooker Hartley’s experience of helping to beat southern hemisphere teams gives him the edge
Welsh great and centurion Gareth Thomas is the latest to add his nod of approval for Hartley, who led England to its historic 3-0 series sweep over the Wallabies in June.
“I’d go more at this time for Dylan Hartley,” revealed the former Wales captain.
“We talk about the mental edge and the physical edge.
“I think what Dylan Hartley has is kind of an experience of beating the Tri-Nation teams, being part of an England team that’s just gone to Australia and defeated them.
“We talk about (tour coach Warren) Gatland and his knowledge because he’s a New Zealander, but also you want knowledge from people who know how to beat these teams.
“I think Dylan Hartley will bring that.”
Warren Gatland believes the England captain has all the correct qualities to lead the side in New Zealand in 2017.
Gatland praised Hartley’s improved discipline, saying: “He’s matured, and he’s done a great job with England.
“He hasn’t been suspended for a while. That’s a big tick against his name.”