England flanker Lewis Moody says he will feel no extra pressure after being handed the captaincy for the RBS 6 Nations match against France.
After skipper Steve Borthwick was ruled out by a knee injury, England boss Martin Johnson turned to Moody – a player he had dropped for the Calcutta Cup match against Scotland.
Leicester flanker Moody’s tearaway style on the pitch has earned him the nickname Mad Dog but the 31-year-old maintains the captain’s armband will not change his all-action approach.
He said: “For me the most important part of being a captain is to play the game the way I do.
“It will not change me. I will just play the way I do. If I need to say something I will do, but there will be no Churchillian speeches.
“If I am worried about anything I can speak to Johnno [Martin Johnson, the manager]. There are not any better people to get advice on captaincy from than him.
“All I am bothered about is doing everything I can to win the game.
“To be asked under whatever circumstance to captain your country is a huge honour.”
There were several other contenders to take Borthwick’s role as captain including No.8 Nick Easter, World Cup winning centre Mike Tindall and lock Simon Shaw.
But Johnson revealed he is confident the team’s senior figures can share the leadership burden placed on Moody.
The England coach said: “Lewis is an inspirational figure in the group and he will bring us that energy and dynamism.
“There is a core group of leaders and we could have chosen two or three guys. Mike Tindall has just come back as a senior player and Nick Easter is a leader at No 8.
“The good thing about captaincy now, more than 18 months ago when I got the job, is that there is a core group of leadership there.”