Newly appointed England captain Dylan Hartley has claimed he has “learned from his lessons” following his appointment ahead of the Six Nations tournament.
Hartley takes over from Chris Robshaw of the Harlequins with immediate effect. Robshaw had held the captaincy for four years.
The new England captain may be a controversial choice to some, having been caught up in high profile acts such as gouging, biting and striking – receiving bans totalling 54 weeks for his actions.
“My rap sheet is well documented and I will get reminded of it daily.” he told the press.
Although Hartley admits he always held faith that he would eventually be able to break back into the England squad, he admitted he was surprised to find out that he would not only do that, but captain his nation too.
“Yes I am surprised, but I will take it with two hands.
“I am confident in myself as a player at Test level. I have captained my club for six years and have learned a lot there.
“I sometimes get it wrong but it has gone well for me at Northampton too. You need to get yourself at a level to be competitive and confrontational. It has gone wrong in the past but it will stay there.”
Now the England camp have shown their faith in the 29-year-old, will he commit any silly offences once more?
“No, of course not. I have learned from my lessons and it is for me to live with. Now I have to lead by example and answer the critics. I am a motivated person.”
Hartley reacted on his personal Twitter account:
Hartley speaks with the BBC’s Dan Roan today: