The appointment of Dylan Hartley as England’s captain for the 2016 Six Nations was the logical progression from his six seasons in charge at Northampton Saints, one of England’s pre-eminent clubs.
He started the tournament with 66 caps, more than any other player in the squad and led the side to the Triple Crown on his 70th appearance and then to the Grand Slam with a stunning 31-21 win over France in Paris.
Few players score a Test try only three minutes after stepping off the bench but Dylan did with gusto when winning his 20th cap, against New Zealand at Twickenham in 2010.
Dylan captained England for the first time in the 14-14 draw with South Africa in June 2012 in the absence of Chris Robshaw and, in 2013, he made his 47th appearance in defeat to Wales as he became England’s third most capped hooker.
His 50th cap was in November 2013, against New Zealand, having missed the British & Irish Lions tour to Australia that year because of disciplinary problems
When playing against Scotland in March 2015 year he overtook Brian Moore’s total of 64. He then broke the record of 73 caps, held by former Saints clubmate Steve Thompson when becoming the first captain to lead England to a series win on Australian soil in June 2016.
On his momentous day in Melbourne, he also scored his second Test try in the 23-7 victory.
England were unbeaten in the first 18 internationals under his command before losing 13-9 to Ireland in Dublin in March 2018.
When England achieved a 61-21 victory over Scotland in their previous game, they had won 18 consecutive Test matches, dating back to the 2015 World Cup pool match against Uruguay and equalled the world record held by New Zealand.
Their victories included the three Tests against Australia in the summer of 2016, all four in the Old Mutual Wealth Series that November and another four in the 2017 Six Nations.
Dylan's leadership was crucial in England’s success as the squad inflicted only the second whitewash on the Wallabies at home and their first since 1971 against the Springboks.
When he led the side to their 10th consecutive Six Nations victory over Italy at Twickenham in February 2017, it equalled the tournament record set by England twice previously, from 1882 to 1886, and 1922 to 1925.
A fortnight later, his squad made history with their 11th Six Nations win in a row.
Dylan moved from his native New Zealand to England in 2002 and initially played for Worcester Warriors, before becoming a member of the England U21 squad at the early age of 19.
Dylan was initially called up for England U18 while staying with relatives in Crowborough and being involved with the local Sussex club.
Educated at Rotorua Boys High School, he went on to cover all three England front row positions during the 2005 IRB Junior World Championship in Argentina.
His next stop was England Saxons with appearances and tries against Italy A and Ireland A in 2007. The following March, he celebrated his 22nd birthday two days after the Saints won promotion back to the Premiership.
A few weeks after returning from England’s tour of Argentina in 2009, Dylan was handed the responsibility of becoming the youngest captain in the Premiership when leading Northampton Saints.
He continued in that role with conspicuous success and in 2013/14, his squad won the Premiership title for the first time.
10 points - 2T
2008 PI(R), A(R), SA(R), NZ(R) 2009 It(R), W(R), I(R), F(R), S(R), Arg (1,2), A(R), Arg, NZ 2010 W, It, I, S, F, NZ(R), A, Sam, SA 2011 W, It, F, S, I, W, I(R) World Cup - Arg(R), G, S(R), F(R) 2012 S, It, W, F, I, SA (1,2,3) 2013 S(R), I(R), F, It(R), W(R), A(R), Arg, NZ 2014 F, S, I, W, It, NZ (2R,3), NZ, SA, Sam (R), A 2015 W, It, I, S, F 2016 S, It, I, W, F, W, A(1,2,3), SA, Fj, Arg, A 2017 F, W, It, S, I, Arg (1,2), Arg, A, Sam(R) 2018 It, W, S, I
Last updated: 2 April 2018