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Rugby’s Greatest: Lawrence Dallaglio

first_img Seismic moment: Dallaglio offloads in the build-up to England’s try in the 2003 World Cup final (Getty) Later, he was picked by England coach Jack Rowell as a No 7 ahead of Neil Back, but in time he found his niche as a six or eight – and he played magnificently in both those positions for the Lions during their 1997 series triumph in South Africa. Rugby’s Greatest: Martin Johnson Expand LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Expand Rugby’s Greatest: Martin Johnson Collapse That’s not just down to his career achievements – for Wasps, England and the Lions – but the heart-on-sleeve passion with which he represented both his country and his family, including the sister he tragically lost to a ferry disaster when he was 17. He is a people’s champion.Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. After a disastrous home World Cup in 2015,… Richard Hill goes down as one of the…center_img One of the greatest second-rows to play the… TAGS: The Greatest Players Club: WaspsCountry: England
Test span: 1995-2007England caps: 85 (70 starts)Lions caps: 3 (3 starts)Test points: 85 (17T) Rugby’s Greatest: Richard Hill England Rugby World Cup Fixtures, Squad, Group, Guide Rugby’s Greatest: Lawrence DallaglioIt seems strange to say this after his garlanded career, but Lawrence Dallaglio’s finest hour was probably the 2004 tour ordeal in New Zealand. England travelled south as world champions and lost the Tests 36-3 and 36-12, yet you shudder to think what the scores would have been without their captain Dallaglio, whose courage and ferocious commitment in a hopeless cause was astonishing.Dallaglio was never better when the chips were down, a point acknowledged by his former Wasps coach Shaun Edwards. “Like a great heavyweight in a dangerous title fight,” he adds, “he was at his best when it was all on the line.”Ironically, England’s most-capped No 8 started life in the backs. At Ampleforth, whom he helped to a National Schools Sevens double in 1989, he was a skinny wing/centre and even his first few appearances for Wasps were as a replacement for England flyer Chris Oti. England Rugby World Cup Fixtures, Squad, Group, Guide Dallaglio was a classic ball-carrier, often the man to truck it up after receiving the kick-off. And as well as his fiery competitiveness and skills from the base of the scrum, he possessed a huge engine. He was the only Englishman to play every minute of the 2003 World Cup, when he added a winner’s medal to the sevens equivalent collected in 1993. Only he and Matt Dawson have achieved this prize double.Once a Wasp… celebrating a Heineken Cup triumph for Wasps, the club he served his whole pro careerDallaglio once lost the England captaincy after a scurrilous tabloid sting, yet it speaks volumes that such a high-profile fall from grace is all but forgotten. Rugby’s Greatest: Richard Hilllast_img read more