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Team of the Week: Allez les bleu

There are five Frenchmen in our starting XV, one more than Wales – the next best team.

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Scotland and Ireland have contributed two each, while England – the tournament leaders – and Italy provided one each.

However, there is plenty reward for the English in our back-up team, where they have four players bubbling under.

Scotland, with four, are also well represented for their spirited performance in a losing cause, while Wales (three), France (two) and Italy (one) make up the numbers.

It is a very settled team, with 10 players returning from week one – wins George North (Wales) and 11 Virimi Vakatawa (France), centres , 13 Michele Campagnaro (Italy) and Jamie Roberts (Wales), flanks John Hardie (Scotland) and CJ Stander (Ireland), locks Alun Wyn Jones (Wales) ad Luke Charteris (Wales), as well as props Dan Cole (England) and Jack McGrath (Ireland).

Team of the Week – Round Two:

15 – Maxime Médard (France):

Not only did he score the match-winning try, but was a constant threat to the Irish defence – making plenty of metres and beating defenders.

Bubbling under: Stuart Hogg (Scotland)

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14 – George North (Wales):

Of all the bursts and darts he went on, with ball in hand, the most lethal resulted in the try that finally killed off the game as a contest 10 minutes from time.

Bubbling under: Tommy Seymour (Scotland)

13 – Michele Campagnaro (Italy):

This caused plenty of debate – the wizardry of Campagnaro in a losing cause or the hat-trick by Jonathan Joseph in the winning team. Joseph did all his damage when the Italy defenders had tired, while Campagnaro was at his best against a fresh defence.

Bubbling under: Jonathan Joseph (England)

12 – Jamie Roberts (Wales):

The veteran is maturing like a good red wine. Defended like a demon and scored a crucial try.

Bubbling under: Owen Farrell (England)

11 – Virimi Vakatawa (France):

He was so much more than just a monster with the ball in hand – making all his tackles, while conceding no penalties or turnovers.

Bubbling under: Tom James (Wales)

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10 – Jules Plisson (France):

France may finally have solved their long-standing flyhalf problem.

Bubbling under: Dan Biggar (Wales)

9 – Greig Laidlaw (Scotland):

He is without doubt the most valuable individual in any of the teams. Pity he doesn't get more support from all his teammates – some who tend to disappear when the heat is on.

Bubbling under: Edoardo Gori (Italy)

8 – Damien Chouly (France):

Classic French No.8 – almost always making ground with ball in hand, his tackle count is into double figures and his discipline is fine – conceding only one penalty.

Bubbling under: Billy Vunipola (England)

7 – John Hardie (Scotland):

Obviously a position we did not agree upon and cause some debate. In the end the numbers counted and the Scot won the day.

Bubbling under: Yacouba Camara (France)

6 – CJ Stander (Ireland):

Without doubt one of the best poaches Ireland ever made in sport.

Bubbling under: Sam Warburton (Wales)

5 – Alun Wyn Jones (Wales):

Another tough call and a long debate. In the end it was decided by a crucial penalty that was conceded by Yoann Maestri.

Bubbling under: Yoann Maestri (France)

4 – Luke Charteris (Wales):

The other half of what must currently be the best lock combination in the world.

Bubbling under: Richie Gray (Scotland)

3 – Dan Cole (England):

He may have conceded a couple of penalties, but otherwise his game was near perfect for a prop.

Bubbling under: Willem Nel (Scotland)

2 – Guilhem Guirado (France):

Truly an inspirational leader – especially with the way he plays.

Bubbling under: Dylan Hartley (England)

1 – Jack McGrath (Ireland):

The amount of work he got through was simply amazing. Ireland need more players with the determination McGrath and Stander showed if their are going to arrest their slide.

Bubbling under: Jefferson Poirot (France)

Our individual selections:

Paul Dobson XV: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 George North, 13 Michele Campagnaro, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Anthony Watson, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Edoardo Gori, 8 Damien Chouly, 7 John Hardie, 6 CJ Stander, 5 Yoann Maestri, 4 Luke Charteris, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Guilhem Guirado, 1 Jack McGrath.

Tauriq Ebrahim XV: 15 Maxime Médard, 14 George North, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Owen Farrell, 11 Virimi Vakatawa, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Greig Laidlaw, 8 Damien Chouly,  7 James Haskell, 6 CJ Stander, 5 Alun Wyn Jones, 4 Richie Gray, 3 Willem Nel, 2 Guilhem Guirado, 1 Jefferson Poirot.

Warren Fortune XV: 15 Maxime Médard, 14 George North, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Tom James, 10 Jules Plisson, 9 Greig Laidlaw, 8 Damien Chouly, 7 John Hardie, 6 CJ Stander 5 Alun Wyn Jones, 4 Luke Charteris, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Guilhem Guirado, 1 Jack McGrath.

Jan de Koning XV: 15 Maxime Médard, 14 George North, 13 Michele Campagnaro, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Virimi Vakatawa, 10 Jules Plisson, 9 Edoardo Gori, 8 Damien Chouly, 7 Yacouba Camara, 6 CJ Stander, 5 Yoann Maestri, 4 Luke Charteris, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Guilhem Guirado, 1 Jack McGrath.

Previous selections:

Team of the Week – Round One: 15 Stuart Hogg (Scotland), 14 George North (Wales), 13 Michele Campagnaro (Italy), 12 Jamie Roberts (Wales), 11 Virimi Vakatawa (France), 10 Jonathan Sexton (Ireland), 9 Conor Murray (Ireland), 8 Billy Vunipola (England), 7 John Hardie (Scotland), 6 CJ Stander (Ireland), 5 Alun Wyn Jones (Wales), 4 Luke Charteris (Wales), 3 San Cole (England), 2 Ross Ford (Scotland), 1 Jack McGrath (Ireland).

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Team of the Week: Allez les bleu

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