Hipkiss believes Johnson is the right man for England job

SUFFOLK-born Bath centre Dan Hipkiss has thrown his weight behind under-fire England manager Martin Johnson and has labelled him ‘the perfect man for the job’.

Johnson and his side have been criticised by former players, such as Brian Moore and Austin Healy, in the inquest that followed England’s disappointing 19-12 World Cup Quarter Final defeat to France in New Zealand, on Saturday.

However, former Diss player Hipkiss, who has 13 international caps for England, believes too much has been made of the defeat in Auckland and urged fans to look at the progress the side has made under Johnson.

France go head-to-head with Wales for a place in this year’s final on Saturday, in Auckland, but Hipkiss believes the stick England have received has been harsh.

“I don’t think it should be doom and gloom, we won and performed well against Scotland (in the World Cup) and defeated Ireland, in Ireland, and Wales in the warm-up games,” said the 29-year-old.

“We almost came back in that France quarter final and I have been in the situation the England players found themselves in where, in the first-half nothing goes right for you and everything goes right for the opposition.

“In Martin Johnson, we have the perfect man for the job and I don’t think people should judge him on the World Cup. We should look at the strides we have taken since he has been in charge.”

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