Team of the Week: What a comeback
OPINION: The Blues finally got their first win of the season and it was a big one.
The team from Auckland staged a second-half fightback to win 38-35 after being down 10-21 at half-time.
The Blues lead the way in terms of representation in our Team of the Week with four players. The Highlanders are close behind with three players in our XV.
In the back three, we have Ben Smith, Waisake Naholo and Melani Nanai. Our midfield consists of Rieko Ioane and Andre Esterhuizen.
Damian Willemse is our flyhalf and Aaron Smith is No.9.
In the pack, we have Akira Ioane, Ardie Savea and Pablo Matera in the back row. Lodewyk de Jager and Vaea Fifita are our choices in the second row.
Ofa Tu'ungafasi, Armand van der Merwe and Tendai Mtawarira make up our front row.
Team of the Week - Round Four:
15 - Ben Smith (Highlanders)
The 31-year-old put in another energetic performance out wide against the Stormers in Dunedin.
Bubbling under: Jordie Barrett (Hurricanes)
14 - Waisake Naholo (Highlanders)
He loves knocking players over - just ask the Stormers players.
Bubbling under: Jack Maddocks (Melbourne Rebels)
13 - Rieko Ioane (Blues)
He was a constant threat out wide against the Lions and he continued his try-scoring form with two tries at Ellis Park.
Bubbling under: Rob Thompson (Highlanders)
12 - Andre Esterhuizen (Sharks)
He made a number of linebreaks against the Sunwolves and was generally hard to bring down. He was also a man possessed on defence.
Bubbling under: Ngani Laumape (Hurricanes)
11 - Melani Nanai (Blues)
He flourished out wide against the Lions. He broke through the Lions' defence a number of times and his running metres went through the roof.
Bubbling under: Makazole Mapimpi (Sharks)
10 - Damian Willemse (Stormers)
He was a joy to watch on attack against the Highlanders. He caused the Highlanders a few problems when he ran at them and he scored a good try as well.
Bubbling under: Elton Jantjies (Lions)
9 - Aaron Smith (Highlanders)
The All Blacks scrumhalf was at his best against the Stormers. His quick passing and decisions bamboozled the Stormers on occasions and he scored two of his team's tries.
Bubbling under: Thomas Perenara (Hurricanes)
8 - Akira Ioane (Blues)
He continues to impress this season. He was a monster with ball in hand and he never missed a tackle on defence. He made some of the Lions' players look like amateurs.
Bubbling under: Jordan Taufua (Crusaders)
7 - Ardie Savea (Hurricanes)
He put in his trademark powerful and aggressive carries against the Crusaders and he was outstanding on defence as well.
Bubbling under: Wian Vosloo (Sharks)
6 - Pablo Matera (Jaguares)
He was all around the park against the Waratahs. he put in some big hits on defence and he was quite effective with ball in hand as well.
Bubbling under: Liam Squire (Highlanders)
5 - Lodewyk de Jager (Bulls)
He put in an unbelievable amount of work against the Reds. He carried the ball strongly and made some serious metres and he was solid on defence as well.
Bubbling under: Luke Romano (Crusaders)
4 - Vaea Fifita (Hurricanes)
The big and mobile Fifita stood up to the challenge against the strong Crusaders' pack.
Bubbling under: Andries Ferreira (Lions)
3 - Ofa Tu'ungafasi (Blues)
He is one of the best props in the world to watch with ball in hand and he showed why against the Lions at Ellis Park.
Bubbling under: Allan Alaalatoa (Brumbies)
2 - Armand van der Merwe (Sharks)
He was outstanding in open play against the Sunwolves. He broke through the Japanese side's defence a number of times with some awesome power.
Bubbling under: Codie Taylor (Crusaders)
1 - Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks)
He was a Beast against the Sunwolves.
Bubbling under: James Slipper (Reds)
Our individual selections:
Paul Dobson XV: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Jack Maddocks, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 André Esterhuizen, 11 Melani Nanai, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Thomas Perenara, 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Lodewyk de Jager, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 2 Armand van der Merwe, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Warren Fortune XV: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Melani Nanai, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Liam Squire, 5 Lodewyk de Jager, 4 Vaea Fifita, 3 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 2 Armand van der Merwe, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Team of the Week - Round Three: 15 David Havili (Crusaders), 14 Julian Savea (Hurricanes), 13 Jack Goodhue (Crusaders), 12 Handré Pollard (Bulls), 11 George Bridge (Crusaders), 10 Richie Mo'unga (Crusaders), 9 Brad Weber (Chiefs), 8 Warren Whiteley (Lions), 7 Billy Harmon (Crusaders), 6 Brad Shields (Hurricanes), 5 Adam Coleman (Melbourne Rebels), 4 Ruan Botha (Sharks), 3 Wilco Louw (Stormers), 2 Malcolm Marx (Lions), 1 Jacques van Rooyen (Lions).
Teams of the Week - Round Two: 15 Ben Smith (Highlanders), 14 Sylvian Mahuza (Lions), 13 Rob Thompson (Highlanders), 12 Ryan Crotty (Crusaders), 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi (Lions), 10 Lima Sopoaga (Highlanders), 9 Aaron Smith (Highlanders), 8 Jordan Taufua (Crusaders), 7 Pieter Labuschagne (Sunwolves), 6 Roelof Smit (Bulls), 5 Samuel Whitelock (Crusaders), 4 Rudolph Snyman (Bulls), 3 Ruan Dreyer (Lions), 2 James Parsons (Blues), 1 Steven Kitshoff (Stormers).
Team of the Week - Round One: 15 Dillyn Leyds (Stormers), 14 Seabelo Senatla (Stormers), 13 Lionel Mapoe (Lions), 12 Damian de Allende (Stormers), 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi (Lions), 10 Robert du Preez (Sharks), 9 Ross Cronje (Lions), 8 Nizaam Carr (Stormers), 7 Cyle Brink (Lions), 6 Siyamthanda Kolisi (Stormers), 5 John Schickerling (Stormers), 4 Ruan Botha (Sharks), 3 Nahuel Tétaz Chaparro (Jaguares), 2 Malcolm Marx (Lions), 1 Jacques van Rooyen (Lions).