Second Phase

Team of the Week: Bullish crusade

Mon, 12 May 2014 13:15
Colin-slade-crusaders
Five players return
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There are a few teams who are beginning to pick up some handy momentum as the Super Rugby season heads towards the June break.

And those are the sides that have been rewarded for their good form in rugby365's famous weekly Super Rugby selection.

The Crusaders, with odds shortening dramatically on them winning an eighth title, have four members in our starting XV - in the wake of their demolition of the Reds at the weekend.

The Bulls, another team that have been showing improved form in recent weeks, provide three members to our frontline selection.

Other form teams, the Chiefs and Brumbies, have two each - with the Highlanders, Western Force, Lions and Hurricanes making up the numbers.

There's furthers reward in our back-up squad for the Chiefs and Brumbies (three players each bubbling under), as well as the Crusaders, Force (two each) and Bulls (one).

The Hurricanes (two), Highlanders and Rebels (one each) make up the numbers.

Five players return from last week - fullback Ben Smith (Highlanders), wing Johnny McNicholl (Crusaders), flyhalf Colin Slade (Crusaders), lock Paul Willemse (Bulls) and hooker Stephen Moore (Brumbies).

Team of the Week - Round 13:

15 - Ben Smith (Highlanders):
Again showed his potency on attack, even though the Lions' defence is not exactly the benchmark of the competition.
Bubbling under: Andre Taylor (Hurricanes)

14 - Johnny McNicholl (Crusaders):
No shortage of quality finishers in New Zealand.
Bubbling under: Richard Buckman (Highlanders)

13 - Marcel Brache (Western Force):
And to think he was unwanted in Cape Town.
Bubbling under: Tim Nanai-Williams (Chiefs)

12 - Jan Serfontein (Bulls):
The young man seem to be benefiting greatly from having been reunited with his former South African Under-20 teammate Handré Pollard.
Bubbling under: Ryan Crotty (Crusaders)

11 - Nemani Nadolo (Crusaders):
This was a tough call between the giant Fijian and the Honey Badger, the Crusaders man just edging the contest because of his greater workrate on defence.
Bubbling under: Nick Cummins (Western Force)

10 - Colin Slade (Crusaders):
He may not be the first-choice for the All Blacks, but he is certainly New Zealand's form flyhalf..
Bubbling under: Handré Pollard (Bulls)

9 - Francois Hougaard (Bulls):
He still switches smoothly between scrumhalf and wing, but it is his much-improved kicking game that won him our vote.
Bubbling under: Andy Ellis (Crusaders)

8 - Warren Whiteley (Lions):
He can justifiably feel having been cheated out of a win. It is such when such hard work goes unrewarded.
Bubbling under: Victor Vito (Hurricanes)

7 - Ardie Savea (Hurricanes):
With, or without, the ball he is a monster.
Bubbling under: Sam Cane (Chiefs)

6 - Tanerau Latimer (Chiefs):
He may not be the biggest ball carrier, but on defence, at the breakdown and even in the line-outs he adds plenty of value.
Bubbling under: Angus Cottrell (Western Force)

5 - Brodie Retallick (Chiefs):
The cement that holds the Chiefs pack together and a real workhorse.
Bubbling under: Sam Carter (Brumbies)

4 - Paul Willemse (Bulls):
Growing nicely under the tutoring of one Victor Matfield.
Bubbling under: Adam Coleman (Brumbies)

3 - Ben Alexander (Brumbies):
Another long debate ensued, with Alexander edging three others based on his enormous workrate on defence in a game were tackling was his primary role. He wasn't half bad in the set pieces either.
Bubbling under: Ben Tameifuna (Chiefs)

2 - Stephen Moore (Brumbies):
He has emerged as the form hooker in the competition and vital to the Brumbies' cause.
Bubbling under: Pat Leafa (Rebels)

1 - Wyatt Crockett (Crusaders):
It was slim pickings among the loosehead props.
Bubbling under: Scott Sio (Brumbies)

Our individual selections!
 
Paul Dobson XV: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Johnny McNicholl, 13 Tim Nanai-Williams, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Warren Whitely, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Wyatt Crockett.

Michael de Vries XV: 15 Andre Taylor, 14 Richard Buckman, 13 Marcel Brache, 12 Ma'a Nonu, 11 Nick Cummins, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 Victor Vito, 7 Schalk Burger, 6 Angus Cottrell, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Wyatt Crockett.

Darryn Pollock XV: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Johnny McNicholl, 13 Marcel Brache, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Tanerau Latimer, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Pat Leafa, 1 Wyatt Crockett.

Jan de Koning XV: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Johnny McNicholl, 13 Marcel Brache, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Nick Cummins, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Warren Whitely, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Tanerau Latimer, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Scott Sio.

Previous selections:
 
Team of the Week - Round 12: 15 Ben Smith (Highlanders), 14 Johnny McNicholl (Crusaders), 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper (Waratahs), 12 Ma'a Nonu (Blues), 11 Willie le Roux (Cheetahs), 10 Colin Slade (Crusaders), 9 Bryn Hall (Blues), 8 Liam Messam (Chiefs), 7 Michael Hooper (Waratahs), 6 Heinrich Brüssow (Cheetahs), 5 Franco Mostert (Lions), 4 Paul Willemse (Bulls), 3 Marcell van der Merwe (Bulls), 2 Stephen Moore (Brumbies), 1 Tony Woodcock (Blues).

Team of the Week - Round 11: 15 Andre Taylor (Hurricanes), 14 Cory Jane (Hurricanes), 13 Malakai Fekitoa (Highlanders), 12 Ma'a Nonu (Blues), 11 Willie le Roux (Cheetahs), 10 Matt Toomua (Brumbies), Aaron Smith (Highlanders), 8 Victor Vito (Hurricanes), 7 Matt Hodgson (Force), 6 Heinrich Brüssow (Cheetahs), 5 Sam Carter (Brumbies), 4 Patrick Tuipulotu (Blues), 3 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen (Hurricanes), 2 Dane Coles (Hurricanes), 1 Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks).

Team of the Week - Round 10: 15 Jason Woodward (Rebels), 14 Damian de Allende (Stormers), 13 Conrad Smith (Hurricanes), 12 Alapati Leiua (Hurricanes), 11 Julian Savea (Hurricanes), 10 Colin Slade (Crusaders), 9 TJ Perenara (Hurricanes), 8 Scott Higginbotham (Rebels), 7 Michael Hooper (Waratahs), 6 Heinrich Brüssow (Cheetahs), 5 Brodie Retallick (Chiefs), 4 Will Skelton (Waratahs), 3 Owen Franks (Crusaders), 2 Shota Horie (Rebels), 1 Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks).
 
Team of the Week - Round Nine: 15 Lwazi Mvovo (Sharks), 14 Joe Tomane (Brumbies), 13 Malakai Fekitoa (Highlanders), 12 Bundee Aki (Chiefs), 11 Nick Cummins (Western Force), 10 Colin Slade (Crusaders), 9 Nic White (Brumbies), 8 Kieran Read (Crusaders), 7 Matt Hodgson (Western Force), 6 Angus Cottrell (Western Force), 5 Luke Jones (Rebels), 4 Lodewyk de Jager (Cheetahs), 3 Ben Alexander (Brumbies), 2 Bismarck du Plessis (Sharks), 1 Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks).
 
Team of the Week - Round Eight: 15 Jayden Hayward (Western Force), 14 Tim Nanai-Williams (Chiefs), 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper (Waratahs), 12 Pat McCabe (Brumbies), 11 Johnny McNicholl (Crusaders), 10 Beauden Barrett (Hurricanes), 9 Sarel Pretorius (Cheetahs), 8 Scott Higginbotham (Rebels), 7 Jack Lam (Hurricanes), 6 Jaco Kriel (Lions), 5 Brodie Retallick (Chiefs), 4 Franco Mostert (Lions), 3 Sekope Kepu (Waratahs), 2 Dane Coles (Hurricanes), 1 Chris King (Highlanders).
 
Team of the Week - Round Seven: 15 Jason Woodward (Rebels), 14 Alapati Leiua (Hurricanes), 13 Juan de Jongh (Stormers), 12 Mitch Inman (Rebels), 11 Julian Savea (Hurricanes), 10 Aaron Cruden (Chiefs), 9 Bryn Hall (Blues), 8 Steven Luatua (Blues), 7 Luke Braid (Blues), 6 Deon Stegmann (Bulls), 5 Victor Matfield (Bulls), 4 Willem Alberts (Sharks), 3 Jannie du Plessis (Sharks), 2 Bismarck du Plessis (Sharks), 1 Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks).
 
Team of the Week - Round Six: 15 Ben Smith (Highlanders), 14 Cornal Hendricks (Cheetahs), 13 Malakai Fekitoa (Highlanders), 12 Kurtley Beale (Waratahs), 11 Robbie Coleman (Brumbies), 10 Quade Cooper (Reds), 9 Francois de Klerk (Lions), 8 Duane Vermeulen (Stormers), 7 Matt Hodgson (Western Force), 6 Seven Luatua (Blues), 5 Brodie Retallick (Chiefs), 4 Franco Mostert (Lions), 3 Kieran Longbottom (Western Force), 2 Tatafu Polota Nau (Waratahs), 1 Jean-Pierre Smith (Brumbies).
 
Team of the Week - Round Five: 15 Jesse Mogg (Brumbies), 14 JP Pietersen (Sharks), 13 Conrad Smith (Hurricanes), 12 Tom Marshall (Chiefs), 11 Lwazi Mvovo (Sharks), 10 Beauden Barrett (Hurricanes), 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow (Chiefs), 8 Kieran Read (Crusaders), 7 Willem Alberts (Sharks), 6 Marcell Coetzee (Sharks), 5 Brodie Retallick (Chiefs), 4 Jeremy Thrush (Hurricanes), 3 Julian Redelinghuys (Lions), 2 Nathan Charles (Western Force), 1 Schalk van der Merwe (Lions).
 
Team of the Week - Round Four: 15 Jesse Mogg (Brumbies), 14 Roc Davis (Reds), 13 Jean de Villiers (Stormers), 12 Par McCabe (Brumbies), 11 Lwazi Mvovo (Sharks), 10 Frans Steyn (Sharks), 9 Cobus Reinach (Sharks), 8 Ben McCalman (Western Force), 7 Schalk Burger (Stormers), 6 Marcell Coetzee (Sharks), 5 Wilhelm Steenkamp (Western Force), 4 Flip van der Merwe (Bulls), 3 Werner Kruger (Bulls), 2 Stephen Moore (Brumbies), 1 Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks).
 
Team of the Week - Round Three: 15 Israel Folau (Waratahs), 14 Tim Nanai-Williams (Chiefs), 13 Conrad Smith (Hurricanes), 12 Kurtley Beale (Waratahs), 11 Bjorn Basson (Bulls), 10 Jacques-Louis Potgieter (Bulls), 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow (Chiefs), 8 Scott Higginbotham (Rebels), 7 Jacques du Plessis (Bulls), 6 Jaco Kriel (Lions), 5 Tom Donnelly (Blues), 4 Hugh Pyle (Rebels), 3 Charlie Faumuina (Blues), 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau (Waratahs), 1 Benn Robinson (Waratahs).
 
Team of the Week - Round Two: 15 Israel Folau (Waratahs), 14 Lachie Turner (Reds), 13 Robbie Fruean (Chiefs), 12 Frances Saili (Blues), 11 Lwazi Mvovo (Sharks), 10 Marnitz Boshoff (Lions), 9 Aaron Smith (Highlanders), 8 Nasi Manu (Highlanders), 7 Pieter Labuschagne (Cheetahs), 6 Jaco Kriel (Lions), 5 Brodie Retallick (Chiefs), 4 Sam Whitelock (Crusaders), 3 Jannie du Plessis (Sharks), 2 Bismarck du Plessis (Sharks), 1 Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks).
 
Team of the Week - Round One: 15 SP Marais (Sharks), 14 Cornal Hendricks (Cheetahs), 13 Paul Jordaan (Sharks), 12 Frans Steyn (Sharks), 11 Lwazi Mvovo (Sharks), 10 Marnitz Boshoff (Lions), 9 Cobus Reinach (Sharks), 8 Ryan Kankowski (Sharks), 7 Derick Minnie (Lions), 6 Marcell Coetzee (Sharks), 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit (Sharks), 4 Lodewyk de Jager (Cheetahs), 3 Coenie Oosthuizen (Cheetahs), 2 Bismarck du Plessis (Sharks), 1 Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks).

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