England in SA

Eng skipper out of PE Test

2012-06-18 18:00
Chris Robshaw (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - A cracked thumb bone has ruled England skipper Chris Robshaw out of the third and final Test against South Africa in Port Elizabeth Saturday, a team spokesperson said.

Hooker Dylan Hartley will take over the captaincy as the Red Roses try to avoid a whitewash having lost the first Test 22-17 in Durban and the second 36-27 in Johannesburg last Saturday.

Flank Robshaw suffered knocks during the first and second Tests against the Springboks at Kings Park and Coca-Cola Park and an image sent to England for specialist opinion revealed the crack.

Coach Stuart Lancaster said: "Chris is devastated as you would imagine. He has led us superbly in the last seven internationals and has been one of our stand-out performers.

"But the medical advice is that he should not play and we have to trust that expert opinion. Dylan Hartley will captain the side. He has been a key part of our leadership group and I know he will step up to the task on Saturday."

Robshaw said: "I am absolutely gutted. I have been very proud and honoured to lead this group during the Six Nations and on this tour and it is a difficult way to end the season.

"I know the lads can raise themselves for tomorrow (against the Northern Barbarians in Potchefstroom) and Saturday and I will be doing everything I can to support them."

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