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GIVE OWEN NZ JOB.

Byline: By DELME PARFITT South Wales Echo

Mike Ruddock today urged Sir Clive Woodward to think about making Michael Owen British Lions captain in New Zealand. The Wales coach - while not suggesting the Welsh No.8 replace Brian O'Driscoll as skipper - believes the Newport Gwent Dragon would wear the armband with distinction in any matches the Irish centre misses.

'This is a very shrewd appointment by Clive, and Michael will not be in the slightest bit over-awed,' said Ruddock.

'And while O'Driscoll is a great squad captain who thoroughly deserves that appointment, Michael is a great lieutenant who would be a first class option in Brian's absence out in New Zealand.'

Meanwhile, Ruddock will almost certainly NOT join the Lions coaching staff in New Zealand after Wales' tour to Canada and America.

He was invited by Woodward after the Six Nations to join the party which already comprises seven coaches.

But Ruddock has arranged to attend the Under-21s World Cup in Argentina which will take up the bulk of June, making any trip Down Under impossible.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:May 19, 2005
Words:176
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