Rugby Championship Team of the Week: Round Two
OPINION: The ‘battle’ in our boardroom was every bit as intriguing as the contest between New Zealand and South Africa in Wellington’s Cake Tin at the weekend.
In the end, seven Springboks found their way into the famous @rugby365com starting XV, but not without much debate.
The All Blacks are not far behind, with four Kiwis in our frontline selection – followed by two each fro Australia and Argentina.
There is some additional reward for the Wallabies’ narrow win over Los Pumas in their Brisbane arm-wrestle – with five Aussies bubbling under, followed by four South Americans.
South Africa and New Zealand (three each) complete the selection process.
Only three players return from Round One – wing Ramiro Moyano (Argentina), scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies (South Africa) and flank Pieter-Steph du Toit (South Africa).
Team of the Week – Round One:
15 – Beauden Barrett (New Zealand):
His poor goal-kicking aside, he was the best on show in a shallow pool.
Bubbling under: Joaquin Tuculet (Argentina)
14 – Cheslin Kolbe (South Africa):
Averaged almost 10 metres with every run, beat three defenders, made two clean breaks and made more tackles than most of his forwards. Small body, BIG heart!
Bubbling under: Ben Smith (New Zealand)
13 – Jack Goodhue (New Zealand):
Caused the Springbok defence all kinds of trouble – 56 metres from 11 runs, seven defenders beating and two clean breaks.
Bubbling under: Matias Moroni (Argentina)
12 – Samu Kerevi (Australia):
The move to No.12 this year has done wonders for his game.
Bubbling under: Jeronimo De La Fuente (Argentina)
11 – Ramiro Moyano (Argentina):
The most metres made by any player this weekend, six defenders beaten and two clean breaks.
Bubbling under: Marika Koroibete (Australia)
10 – Handré Pollard (South Africa):
His tactical game, especially in the first half, was on another level.
Bubbling under: Christian Lealiifano (Australia)
9 – Herschel Jantjies (South Africa):
There will be debate, and most of it with merit. But he edges the contest because of over-and-above his general play he produced that last try.
Bubbling under: Will Genia (Australia)
8 – Kieran Read (New Zealand):
Another close call, but a couple of errors by Duane Vermeulen swung it the way of Read.
Bubbling under: Duane Vermeulen (South Africa)
7 – Pieter-Steph du Toit (South Africa):
There were two crucial turnovers that swung the final vote his way.
Bubbling under: Matt Todd (New Zealand)
6 – Michael Hooper (Australia):
Invaluable to the Wallaby cause – both with the ball in hand and on defence, also winning some crucial turnovers.
Bubbling under: Pablo Matera (Argentina)
5 – Sam Whitelock (New Zealand):
His work ethic and experience saw him stand out in a tight contest.
Bubbling under: Franco Mostert (South Africa)
4 – Guido Petti Pagadizaval (Argentina):
Very busy afternoon, especially on defence – where he made 14 tackles, without slipping any – and even won a crucial turnover.
Bubbling under: Eben Etzebeth (South Africa)
3 – Trevor Nyakane (South Africa):
Made a massive impact off the bench and perhaps now deserve a start.
Bubbling under: Sekope Kepu (Australia)
2 – Malcolm Marx (South Africa):
Another intriguing head-to-head in which Marx’s work on defence won him our vote over Codie Taylor.
Bubbling under: Codie Taylor (New Zealand)
1 – Steven Kitshoff (South Africa):
Cemented his starting spot and those two turnovers proved invaluable.
Bubbling under: Scott Sio (Australia)
Our individual selections:
Paul Dobson XV: 15 Beauden Barrett, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Ramiro Moyano, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Will Genia, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Jan de Koning XV: 15 Beauden Barrett, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Ramiro Moyano, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Michael Hooper, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Guido Petti Pagadizaval, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Team of the Week – Round One: 15 Ben Smith (New Zealand), 14 Sevu Reece (New Zealand), 13 Matías Orlando (Argentina), 12 Jerónimo de la Fuente (Argentina), 11 Ramiro Moyano (Argentina), 10 Beauden Barrett (New Zealand), 9 Herschel Jantjies (South Africa), 8 Francois Louw (South Africa), 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit (South Africa), 6 Pablo Matera (Argentina), 5 Lodewyk de Jager (South Africa), 4 Brodie Retallick (New Zealand), 3 Angus Ta’avao (New Zealand), 2 Dane Coles (New Zealand), 1 Ofa Tuungafasi (New Zealand).