Brown 'honoured' to lead Scotland

Thu, Nov 1, 2012, 00:00

NEWS:KELLY BROWN is intent on leading by example as Scotland captain after wondering if his chance might have slipped by.

Nine months after first being asked to lead Scotland by head coach Andy Robinson, only to suffer a broken ankle, the 30-year-old Saracens backrower has been confirmed as skipper for the EMC Autumn Test with New Zealand on November 11th.

Brown was asked to succeed Edinburgh hooker Ross Ford in the role at a senior players’ meeting with Robinson and immediately accepted.

“It’s a huge honour and one I’m really, really looking forward to,” he said. “I was asked and then I got injured. I was aware it may not happen again.

“I just wanted to work as hard as I possibly could and it’s a huge honour to be asked to captain the side again.”

Rather than utter Churchillian speeches, the indomitable blindside flanker or number eight plans to show his team the way forward on the field.

The former Melrose captain, suffers from a stammer which he has addressed with the help of the McGuire Programme allowing him to now speak fluently.

“I’m more a man that would like to lead with his actions,” he said.

“When something needs to be said I will say it, but my main role now is to make sure everyone in the squad knows exactly what’s expected of them and that they just focus on doing their role as best as they can.”

It is a similar method to David Sole and Finlay Calder, men who Brown cites as leadership inspiration.

“If I can be half as good as they were as skippers then I’ll have done a pretty good job,” he said.

When Brown wins his 50th cap at Murrayfield a week on Sunday he will become the fifth Scotland captain in two years.

Robinson anticipates Brown will be the permanent skipper and it was evident Ford was merely minding the position when the back-rower was invited to sit with the coaching team during the 2012 RBS Six Nations.

Robinson said: “He’s probably learnt how tough it is to be a coach in that booth.

“Kelly Brown is a quality rugby player who epitomises the culture of Scottish rugby.

“He’s a tough competitor, very consistent and a very, very good leader in the way he can galvanise the team. He’s very simple in approach which mirrors the way we’re trying to play.”

Brown has missed Scotland’s last nine Tests and is untainted by the miserable Six Nations campaign which resulted in a whitewash and the wooden spoon last season. He also missed summer tour to Australia, Fiji and Samoa, when Ford led the team to three wins.

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