Rugby World Cup 2015: Jonny Wilkinson, Lawrence Dallaglio and Jason Robinson to reunite as ITV name bumper pundit line-up

Former international captains Gareth Thomas, Brian O'Driscoll, George Gregan, Michael Lynagh and Sean Fitzpatrick also feature

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The Independent Online

England's Rugby World Cup winners Jonny Wilkinson, Lawrence Dallaglio and Jason Robinson will be reunited this autumn as part of ITV's Rugby World Cup coverage, it has been announced.

The 2003 World Cup heroes will join their former head coach Sir Clive Woodward for this year's tournament on home soil, which gets underway at Twickenham on 18 September when England take on Fiji.

The foursome will all feature as pundits for the broadcaster, and will be joined by a host of big names from the world of rugby union that have written the headlines in the past World Cups.

Recently retired Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll will also be a part of the line-up, while the theme of ex-internationals continues in the form of Wales' Gareth Thomas and George Gregan of Australia. The lead presenter role has gone to John Inverdale, who has presented the BBC's Six Nations coverage since 2006.

 

Wilkinson unforgettably kicked the winning drop goal for the Red Rose against Australia in the final 12 years ago, while Robinson scored England's only try in the topsy-turvy 20-17 triumph after extra-time.

Gregan skippered Australia that day and also played in the victorious 1999 Wallabies side, but he will stand alongside Wilkinson this time rather than stand opposite the ex-fly-half.

Thomas, the first openly gay professional rugby player, reprises his broadcasting role from 2011 and O'Driscoll watches a World Cup from the sidelines for the first time since 1995 after retiring from the game last year.

Former British and Irish Lions and Scotland coach Sir Ian McGeechan, victorious 1995 South Africa captain Francois Pienaar, New Zealand's Sean Fitzpatrick, Australia's Michael Lynagh and David Flatman complete the list of pundits.

Thomas-O'Driscoll.jpg
Former respective Wales and Ireland captains Thomas and O'Driscoll

Niall Sloane, ITV director of sport, said: "A Rugby World Cup hosted by England is a once in a generation event and it's our privilege as the exclusive television broadcaster to bring viewers the full impact of all the action and emotion throughout what we hope will be an unforgettable tournament.

"We believe we've assembled a world-class line up of rugby talent who, through their own expertise, experience and sheer passion for the game can help deliver the best possible coverage for those watching at home."

Additional reporting by PA

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