Emily Scarratt remains the best female player in rugby according to Red Roses legend and Allianz Premier 15s rival Katy Daley-McLean.
But the Loughborough Lightning ace will have to adjust to playing a backseat role and being away from the limelight as she emerges as an ‘experienced' head in Rhys Edwards' setup.
Scarratt, 31, was named World Rugby Women's Player of the Year in 2019 and last month helped steer England to a third Women's Six Nations title in a row.
Rampant Red Roses soar back to TikTok Women's Six Nations summit with emphatic win over Ireland
Centre Scarratt - England and Lightning's designated kicker - has racked up more than 600 points since her international debut and notched a try in the Red Roses' rampant 67-3 triumph over Italy during their triumphant campaign.
No.10 Daly-McLean, who played 116 times for England and led them to World Cup glory in 2014, believes Scarratt's role is evolving but says she's still blazing a trail as the best player on the planet.
The 35-year-old, whose Sale Sharks side went down 26-12 in the final game of the Allianz Premier 15s season, said: "Emily is the world's best player - and we all know the reasons why.
"She's probably a more experienced head now and is doing a bit more leading, whereas previously from her we've seen her on ball, carrying it and finishing off tries.
"She's now steering that England backline and supporting Helena [Rowland] and Zoe [Harrison].
"It's a different role for her this year, but once she gets her hands on the ball in big games we'll still see a traditional Emily Scarratt.
"She thrives under that pressure and is a big part of the team."
Scarratt and Daley-McLean are both Red Roses trailblazers and went head-to-head in domestic action last weekend.
Scarratt racked up 11 points in the convincing victory - one try, three conversions - while Daley-McLean slotted a solitary conversion following Lisa Neumann's try.
Lightning's triumph secured a fourth-place finish in the Allianz Premier 15s table while struggling Sale finished ninth - 14 points above DMP Sharks - after their 18 matches.
Daley-McLean unexpectedly hung up her international boots in December but is still a key lynchpin in the Sale Sharks setup, who were competing in their maiden professional season.
The 2014 World Cup-winning captain's presence has failed to fire Darren Lamon's side up the Allianz Premier 15s table, however, finishing a whole 41 points behind Lightning and the final play-off place.
Lightning's win built valuable momentum heading into their semi-final date with Saracens but for Daley-McLean and Sale, Saturday's fixture had only pride at stake.
Sale shocked fifth-placed Exeter Chiefs in their penultimate match and Daley-McLean wants that to be a blueprint for her players next season.
"It was a massive win for us at the weekend against Exeter - it's been a tough season, but that win for us was absolutely huge for us," she added.
"For us, it's been a bit of an up and down season but I think Covid has done that to a lot of teams. For us, we're very grateful we're able to continue.
"I think we've done well for our first season - there are a couple of games where we'd have liked the results to go the other way, but this win showed our potential.
"We've been close in games and when we turn up and really do stick to our plan, we can cause the best sides real problems."
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