Captain Vote - Can French Flair prune England's Rose?
We’ve reached the final head-to-head in the opening sections of our Knockout Fan’s Vote World’s Best Captain competition as we wrap up this round with our final northern hemisphere captains.
The winner of this head-to-head will go up against Wales’ Alun Wyn Jones in the semi-finals, and the winner of that vote will go up against Springbok captain Siya Kolisi or Australia’s Michael Hooper to be crowned the World’s Best Captain as voted by you, our loyal readers.
The choices for this clash are France’s Charles Ollivon and England’s Owen Farrell, so pick wisely.
You, the reader, determine who progresses to the next round, so head to our Instagram and Facebook pages to make your selection.
The 27-year-old made his international debut against Fiji in November 2014, as a replacement and has since gone on to make a total of 14 appearances, scoring 25 points. Injury has robbed him of adding more international caps to his name but with a tackle success of 91% at the 2019 World Cup and 155 metres made in three matches, Ollivon showed just how vital he is to the French side.
That dedication and high work rate saw him being handed the captaincy by coach Fabian Althea ahead of the 2020 Six Nations. Ollivon’s role as captain got off to the perfect start as he led his side to a 24-17 victory over World Cup runners-up England, leading from the front by scoring two tries. France went on to beat Italy (35-22) and Wales (27-23) but come unstuck against Scotland (17-28) before the competition was called off due to the current global pandemic.
The England centre-come-flyhalf got his first taste of international captaincy on 10 March 2018 against France in Paris and it was not a good one as they lost 16-22. Later that year, he once again led his country on a tour to South Africa. Farrell remained winless as captain for another two Tests before finally tasting victory in the third Test.
In the 2019 Six Nations, Farrell led his charges to second place, with three wins, one draw and a solitary defeat in their five matches. He continued his leadership role at the 2019 World Cup, taking them all the way to the final where they lost 12-32 to South Africa.
Sources: Rugby’O’Top, Sebastien RCT, Andrew Forde and England Rugby