A little earlier I posted the Super 14 Team Team of the Week. As you all know, the Super 14 is not the only competition on the go at the moment – the NH heavies are all battling it out for the 6 Nations crown. This is Rugby365′s chosen 6 Nations Team of the Week…
Wales and England dominated Round Three of the Six Nations tournament and most pundits have now installed them as favourites for the title.
However, the other teams also made huge contributions to an entertaining weekend’s Six Nations action and in our Team of the Week review we look at the individuals from all the teams … rather than the team efforts.
In short, we again pick the Best from the Best.
Our talent pool is spread around nicely, with Scotland the only team not represented.
Also, and this may be a surprise to many, the unbeaten Welsh team doesn’t have the largest representation.
That honour goes to the fast improving Irish, who make up a third (five) of our team. England is next best with four members of our squad – while France, Ireland and Wales each have two members.
6N Team of the Week – Round Three:
15 – Cédric Heymans (France):
He was one of the few French backs who looked like sparking something.
14 – Paul Sackey (England):
He is busy maturing and developing into a fine wing. Some parts of his game needs work, but you can’t beat raw pace and he has plenty.
13 – Tom Shanklin (Wales):
Like good red wine the 28-year-old is getting better with age. At first Shanklin was regarded as a “super sub” in the Welsh side, but now – with 50 caps to his name – he has established himself in the starting lineup.
12 – Andrew Trimble (Ireland):
He has mostly been used as back-up to Gordon D’Arcy and Brian O’Driscoll – more often for O’Driscoll at outside centre. But with D’Arcy injured Trimble is once again showing his true value in the midfield as O’Driscoll’s partner.
11 – Shane Williams (Wales):
The Welsh wizard! Enough said.
10 – Jonny Wilkinson (England):
When Wilkinson fires, England can be pretty close to unstoppable, especially if that marauding pack gets going.
9 – Eoin Reddan (Ireland):
He may be new to the scene, having replaced veteran Peter Stringer in the starting XV at the World Cup last year. But his performances on the Six Nations stage – which includes a Man of the Match award in his first 6N game in the 16-11 victory over Italy at Croke Park – show he is going to be around for a while.
8 – Sergio Parisse (Italy):
When a team gets beaten as badly as Italy did, at the hands of Wales at the weekend, it takes a special player to stand out in the losing team. Parisse showed he is a class act.
7 – Thierry Dusautoir (France):
Another of France’s African born stars. If only the rest of his teammates was as committed as Dusautoir.
6 – Denis Leamy (Ireland):
He is so consistent that he is almost taken for granted, but this past weekend he was something special.
5 – Steve Borthwick (England):
He has established himself among the best line-out jumpers in the world and at the weekend again showed exactly why he is so highly rated by his peers.
4 – Donncha O’Callaghan (Ireland):
Although he initially appeared on the international stage as a replacement, he has now established himself as one of the most respected second row forwards in Test rugby.
3 – Martín Castrogiovanni (Italy):
He scored a classic prop forward’s try, but it is his allround game and powerful scrumming that impressed us most.
2 – Bernard Jackman (Ireland):
Having only just established himself as a regular in the Irish starting XV, he is now one of their standout players. A confident line-out operator who relishes running at defenders.
1 – Andy Sheridan (England):
He demolishes almost every scrum he comes up against and is a damn fine ball carrier as well.