Lydiate backs captain Warburton

Date published: February 26 2015

Sam Warburton will join Ryan Jones as Wales' longest-serving captain but it will mean nothing if they lose on Saturday in Paris.

That's according to Dan Lydiate, who will start alongside Warburton in the back row at the Stade de France.

Wales need a fourth straight win over les Bleus if they are to get back in contention for the Six Nations title, a run they haven't achieved since the 1950s.

Leading the way for the 33rd time will be Warburton, who is still only 26 years old, and Lydiate believes he is still improving as a captain.

"It's a massive achievement for him and I think it's testament to how he's led the side over the last few years since the World Cup," Lydiate said. 

"But it doesn't mean anything unless we get a result out there on Saturday so that's what we'll be focusing on. 

"He came in as captain very young and he's obviously matured as a player and as a captain as well and it's something that he's still growing into. Probably the best is still to come from him as skipper."

While the French were disappointing in Dublin last time out, Lydiate, who spent 18 months in France with Racing-Métro, remains wary of the threat they can pose.

"France can be the best team in the world on their day, we know how dangerous and elusive they can be and you just have to hope they are not performing," he added. 

"We have to do everything within our powers to stop their free-flowing rugby and get stuck into them as best we can."