The Tri Nations tournament for 2011 is a thing of the past with the Wallabies winning the title in spectacular fashion after beating the All Blacks in Brisbane. Here is the team that I think fairly represents the best players in each position taking into account the series as a whole:
1.Beast Mtawarira – Looked by far the best scrumming loosehead, and was the most active as a ball carrier. The Springbok front row is a different machine with him in it.
2.Stephen Moore – Of all the hookers that have taken part on a consistent basis during the competition, Moore is the most solid. Bismarck showed his worth in the home games for the Boks, but Moore played out of his skin for all the games.
3.Owen Franks – The best tighthead of the tournament by a long shot, kept the New Zealand scrum strong and will be a huge contributor in the World Cup for the home team.
4.Brad Thorn – The veteran is still playing like he used to back in the day, and his experience did the team a world of good.
5.Victor Matfield – Led the team with distinction in the victory over the All Blacks, and is a solid backbone of the Bok scrum.
6.Heinrich Brüssow – Isn’t is great to have this player back in form? He showed what the Boks were missing last year and will be so influential come World Cup time.
7.David Pocock – Bam-Bam showed the All Blacks how to poach ball without doing it illegally, and should be a star for the Wallabies in the upcoming tournament.
8.Radike Samo – Based purely on his last performance against the All Blacks, what a player he is at the ripe age of 35! Brilliant! Hope to see more of him during the World Cup.
9.Will Genia – There wasn’t ever going to be any other name in this position. He is on par to the Fourie du Preez of 2007. World class!
10.Dan Carter/ Quade Cooper – I couldn’t make the call. They both had fantastic games and they both had an average game. This head to head is a crowd pleaser!
11.Digby Ioane – Looked dangerous everytime he touched the ball, and is a very hard man to bring down. Could be one of the top try scorers at the World Cup, should he keep his form up.
12.Ma’a Nonu – Talk was that he would play second fiddle to Money-Bill Williams at this World Cup, but how great has his form been during this Tri Nations? He looks dangerous with ball in hand and takes a few tacklers with him.
13.Conrad Smith – Not the biggest player in the World, but sure as hell makes a huge impact on the park. He is the ideal feeder to run off the damage Nonu does.
14.James O’Connor – He might not have featured in the last game, but was part of an impressive double over the Boks. His speed and accuracy with the kicking boot at such a young age, this kid is a talent.
15.Mils Muliaina – The most senior backline player in the All Blacks team, he looks and runs like a spring chicken. Brilliant under the high ball, a good boot on him as well, the best all round full back around, closely followed by Kurtley Beale.Tweet