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England captain Lewis Moody retires from Test rugby
Bath flanker announces retirement after winning 71 caps
Posted Oct 25, 2011 by Chris White
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The flanker who was part of the 2003 World Cup winning side made the decision after the disappointments in New Zealand this autumn based on the future success of his country. Moody said “If England want to start planning for a successful World Cup in four years time, it is my belief they should be appointing a new captain and starting afresh from February.”
Moody, Mike Tindall and Nick Easter – all 33 years of age – have lead England in the past 18 months, although rumours are circulating about their futures in the international setup also. If they don’t retire, they could be thrown into the international wilderness anyway if Martin Johnson, or his replacement should he lose his position, choose to go down the younger route with the 2015 World cup in England in mind.
Moody made his international debut against Canada in 2001 and went on to win the World Cup and Grand Slam with England in 2003, playing all seven matches in Australia en route to lifting the Webb Ellis Trophy, coming off the bench to be involved in the line out which resulted in the famous Jonny Wilkinson drop goal.
Awarded an MBE in 2003, Moody was named as captain of England for the first time against France in the 2010 Six Nations and left his club Leicester Tigers for a new start at Bath after 14 years at Welford Road.
He scored nine tries in his 71 appearances for England, and represented the British and Irish Lions thee times on the 2005 tour of New Zealand.