Borthwick’s bold Smith pick comes because England are playing catchup

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Outstanding fly-half gets chance to dazzle against France while ‘mad dog’ Ellis Genge will make for a fascinating captain

Nothing can match Downing Street over the past nine months in terms of high-profile reshuffles at No 10 but Twickenham is fast catching up. There have now been as many different starting England captains since July as there have been serving prime ministers, with Marcus Smith’s elevation to the starting lineup to face France at the expense of Owen Farrell the latest abrupt changing of the old guard.

Fair play to Steve Borthwick who, at a stroke, has transformed expectations in middle England, at least for a day or two. The easy thing to do would have been to keep calm and simply carry on with Farrell as skipper and fly-half for England’s final tournament home game before this autumn’s World Cup. Instead Borthwick, for a mixture of reasons, has taken a deep breath and gone for it.

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Written by Robert Kitson
This news first appeared on under the title “Borthwick’s bold Smith pick comes because England are playing catchup”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.