Tue 2 Oct 2018 | 07:59

RC Team of the Week: Still the best

RC Team of the Week: Still the best
Tue 2 Oct 2018 | 07:59
RC Team of the Week: Still the best
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OPINION: New Zealand bounced back from their loss to South Africa and proved they are still the best team in the world.

Their 23-12 victory over Argentina may not have been flawless, but it was good enough for them to dominate @rugby365com’s famous weekly selection.

There are seven All Blacks in @rugby365’s starting XV, with South Africa – emerging as a possible threat – providing four players to the first-choice selection.

Australia and Argentina, with two each, make up the numbers.

The Springboks’ reward for beating the Wallabies in a scrappy match this past weekend comes in the form of our back-up squad – where they have six players bubbling under.

The All Blacks, Wallabies and Los Pumas have three players each in the back-up squad.

Seven players returns from the previous round – centre Ryan Crotty (New Zealand), wing Aphiwe Dyantyi (South Africa), flyhalf Nicolás Sánchez (Argentina), flanks Pieter-Steph du Toit (South Africa) and Pablo Matera (Argentina), lock Franco Mostert (South Africa) and hooker Codie Taylor (New Zealand).

Team of the Week – Round Five:

15 – Dane Haylett-Petty (Australia):
He feasted on the surfeit of possession the Springbok boots sent his way.
Bubbling under: Emiliano Boffelli (Argentina)

14 – Waisake Naholo (New Zealand):
On the days that he hits hit straps, he is near unstoppable. Maybe his defence still needs some work.
Bubbling under: Cheslin Kolbe (South Africa)

13 – Ryan Crotty (New Zealand):
The glue in the All Black backline – not only a massive threat with ball in hand, but also solid on defence.
Bubbling under: Reece Hodge (Australia)

12 – Sonny Bill Williams (New Zealand):
When fit and injury free, he still adds tremendous value to the All Black midfield. Coach Steve Hansen must hope he stays in one piece till after the World Cup next year.
Bubbling under: Andre Esterhuizen (South Africa)

11 – Aphiwe Dyantyi (South Africa):
We all know he can score tries, but his defensive capabilities have come along in leaps and bounds.
Bubbling under: Rieko Ioane (New Zealand)

10 – Nicolás Sánchez (Argentina):
With Beauden Barrett having a few wobbles, he is arguably the world’s most impressive No.10 at present.
Bubbling under: Beauden Barrett (New Zealand)

9 – Will Genia (Australia):
The grand old master still has it in him. Pity he doesn’t always get much support from his teammates.
Bubbling under: Thomas Perenara (New Zealand)

8 – Ardie Savea (New Zealand):
The All Blacks have the perfect replacement if Kieran Read’s body doesn’t last to the World Cup next year.
Bubbling under: David Pocock (Australia)

7 – Pieter Steph du Toit (South Africa):
His physicality and energy are just what the Springboks needed. He has made a tournament-high of 78 tackles, at a rate of 16 tackles per match.
Bubbling under: Michael Hooper (Australia)

6 – Pablo Matera (Argentina):
He is so much more than just a brute, a player that does a lot more than just tackle – which he does very effectively.
Bubbling under: Siyamthanda Kolisi (South Africa)

5 – Franco Mostert (South Africa):
One of the unsung heroes in the Springbok tea. A workhorse who does plenty of the dirty work and the most productive defender after teammate Pieter-Steph du Toit.
Bubbling under: Tomas Lavanini (Argentina)

4 – Eben Etzebeth (South Africa):
He is regaining his best form, with an improved workrate and great physicality at the breakdown.
Bubbling under: Guido Petti Pagadizaval (Argentina)

3 – Ofa Tu’ungafasi (New Zealand):
Brought a lot more than just scrum power. Beginning to mature as an allround player.
Bubbling under: Frans Malherbe (South Africa)

2 – Codie Taylor (New Zealand):
On current form he may well have overtaken Malcolm Marx as the world’s premier hooker.
Bubbling under: Malcolm Marx (South Africa)

1 – Karl Tu’inukuafe (New Zealand):
We have all seen his scrum performance, but for a prop to make 14 tackles tells you he is not just a one-trick pony.
Bubbling under: Steven Kitshoff (South Africa)

Our individual selections:

Paul Dobson XV: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Ryan Crotty, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Nicolás Sánchez, 9 Will Genia, 8 Ardie Savea, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Karl Tu’inukuafe.

Warren Fortune XV: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Reece Hodge, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Rieko Ioane, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Will Genia, 8 Ardie Savea, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Siyamthanda Kolisi, 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Karl Tu’inukuafe.

Jan de Koning XV: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Ryan Crotty, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Nicolás Sánchez, 9 Will Genia, 8 David Pocock, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Guido Petti Pagadizaval, 3 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Karl Tu’inukuafe.

Our previous selections:

Team of the Week – Round Four: 15 Willie le Roux (South Africa), 14 Ben Smith (New Zealand), 13 Reece Hodge (Australia), 12 Ryan Crotty (New Zealand), 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi (South Africa), 10 Nicolás Sánchez (Argentina), 9 Francois de Klerk (South Africa), 8 Warren Whiteley (South Africa), 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit (South Africa), 6 Pablo Matera (Argentina), 5 Franco Mostert (South Africa), 4 Samuel Whitelock (New Zealand), 3 Frans Malherbe (South Africa), 2 Codie Taylor (New Zealand), 1 Steven Kitshoff (South Africa).

Team of the Week – Round Three: 15 Emiliano Boffelli (Argentina), 14 Bautista Delguy (Argentina), 13 Jack Goodhue (New Zealand), 12 Matt Toomua (Australia), 11 Ramiro Moyano (Argentina), 10 Nicolás Sánchez (Argentina), 9 Thomas Perenara (New Zealand), 8 Kieran Read (New Zealand), 7 Ardie Savea (New Zealand), 6 Shannon Frizell (New Zealand), 5 Scott Barrett (New Zealand), 4 Guido Petti Pagadizaval (Argentina), 3 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro (Argentina), 2 Codie Taylor (New Zealand), 1 Santiago Garcia Botta (Argentina).

Team of the Week – Round Two: 15 Jordie Barrett (New Zealand), 14 Ben Smith (New Zealand), 13 Matías Moroni (Argentina), 12 Ngani Laumape (New Zealand), 11 Waisake Naholo (New Zealand), 10 Beauden Barrett (New Zealand), 9 Aaron Smith (New Zealand), 8 Kieran Read (New Zealand), 7 Sam Cane (New Zealand), 6 Pablo Matera (Argentina), 5 Sam Whitelock (New Zealand), 4 Brodie Retallick (New Zealand), 3 Juan Figallo (Argentina), 2 Agustin Creevy (Argentina), 1 Joe Moody (New Zealand).

Team of the Week – Round One: 15 Ben Smith (New Zealand), 14 Waisake Naholo (New Zealand), 13 Jack Goodhue (New Zealand), 12 Andre Esterhuizen (South Africa), 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi (South Africa), 10 Beauden Barrett (New Zealand), 9 Aaron Smith (New Zealand), 8 David Pocock (Australia), 7 Sam Kane (New Zealand), 6 Pablo Matera (Argentina), 5 Sam Whitelock (New Zealand), 4 Eben Etzebeth (South Africa), 3 Owen Franks (New Zealand), 2 Malcolm Marx (South Africa), 1 Joe Moody (New Zealand).

@rugby365com

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