Jones backs Robshaw to achieve career high

Chris Robshaw (File)
Chris Robshaw (File)

London - England coach Eddie Jones believes Chris Robshaw is about to enter the "best part of his career" after stripping him of the Red Rose captaincy.

Jones, the first overseas coach of the England side, decided on a change of leadership after a lacklustre World Cup saw tournament hosts England crash out in the first round last year.

Robshaw, now back playing at blindside for club side Harlequins rather than openside -- where he made his name internationally -- remains in an England squad for the Six Nations that will now be captained by hooker Dylan Hartley.

"Chris was disappointed, but I think the next part of his career is going to be the best part of his career," Jones said Tuesday.

"I think he'll feel a little bit unburdened and he'll get out and play some good rugby," the Australian added. "He's been doing that for Harlequins and I think he'll do that for England. I'm hopeful that by the end of the Six Nations, he's the best number six (blindside) in Europe.

"I think he's done really well. He's easily the best six in England," added Jones, who compared him to England's 2003 World Cup-winning blindside Richard Hill.

"He's got a high work-rate and reminds me of Richard Hill," said former Australia and Japan coach Jones.

"He's a similar sort of player to Hill. He never gets too many wraps, but does the hard work and that's the sort of player he can develop as and be world-class."

Meanwhile Jonathan Joseph is in line to start England's Six Nations opener against Scotland -- Jones's first game in charge -- after fellow outside centre Elliot Daly was one of 10 players released back to their clubs on Tuesday ahead of the February 6 clash at Murrayfield.

In all, there are 12 survivors from the England squad that lost 33-13 to Australia at Twickenham in October last time out, a defeat that sealed their World Cup exit.

England are due to name their matchday XV to play Scotland a week on Thursday.

England Squad

Backs (10):

Mike Brown (Harlequins), Danny Care (Harlequins), Ollie Devoto (Bath), Owen Farrell (Saracens), George Ford (Bath), Alex Goode (Saracens), Jonathan Joseph (Bath), Jack Nowell (Exeter), Anthony Watson (Bath), Ben Youngs (Leicester)

Forwards (13):

Dan Cole (Leicester), Jack Clifford (Harlequins), Jamie George (Saracens), Dylan Hartley (Northampton, capt), James Haskell (Wasps), Paul Hill (Northampton), George Kruis (Saracens), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Courtney Lawes (Northampton), Joe Marler (Harlequins), Chris Robshaw (Harlequins), Billy Vunipola (Saracens), Mako Vunipola (Saracens)

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