The best....non political....WC team

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Nov 04, 2019, 17:08








The Beast

Malcolm Marx








Forget about the Japanese wings, hooker and number 8. Forget about the rote political selections. These are the guys who went out there and made things happen.

Nov 04, 2019, 17:19

I can live with that team.

Nov 04, 2019, 17:39

Hooper has taken an obscene amount of abuse back home, but he is sensational. I don't think there is a better leader in the game, he really lifts that team beyond itself. Quite frankly, I don't know how Wallaby rugby is going to survive without him next season. What a job their next coach has on his hands!

Nov 04, 2019, 17:56

Planet Rugby's Team of the Tournament is probably a lot more accurate . . . not only because they don't exclude players like World Rugby Player of the Year Pieter-Steph du Toit just because they made a wrong call many years ago and are still too childish and self-important to admit it . . . not only because they haven't bought into all the hysterical hype and included average plodders like Eben Etzebeth who did nothing of note during the entire RWC . . . but because it's selected by people who understand rugby rather than stupid and biased noobs.

Here is the Planet Rugby Team of the Tournament (including honourable mentions):

15 Beauden Barrett (New Zealand): It wasn’t really a tournament for great full-back play. The individuals from the two finalists, Willie le Roux and Elliot Daly, had their weaknesses, while the best of the rest was Wales’ Liam Williams, who would have got in had it not been for the performances of Barrett. The All Blacks may have struggled in the semi-final but he was excellent in every other match he played in and linked well with Richie Mo’unga.


14 Cheslin Kolbe (South Africa): An easy selection here, despite the form of Japan’s Kotaro Matsushima, England’s Anthony Watson and New Zealand’s Sevu Reece, as Kolbe consistency provided a spark for the victorious Springboks. Injury may have ruled the wing out of the semi-final but he scored a stunning try in the showpiece event and was excellent every time he took to the field. Has become one of the stars of world rugby over the course of this tournament and will surely have that South African right wing spot tied down for many years.


13 Manu Tuilagi (England): After years of injury, it was wonderful to see Leicester Tigers’ gargantuan centre at his best during the World Cup. South Africa shackled him well in the final but no other team did as the 28-year-old became an integral part of the Red Rose midfield. Was a certainty for selection, whether at 12 or 13, and produced some excellent displays throughout the six weeks, meaning that he takes the position from Wales’ Jonathan Davies, France’s Virimi Vakatawa and South Africa’s defensive linchpin Lukhanyo Am.


12 Damian de Allende (South Africa): This was a tough one as Owen Farrell was the heartbeat of the England side, whether through his actions on the field or his words off it, but De Allende was simply excellent for the Springboks. The 27-year-old has always been a talent but has sometimes struggled to show that at international level. That was until this World Cup where he was consistently excellent and formed a superb centre partnership with Am to edge out Farrell, New Zealand’s Anton Lienert-Brown and Australia’s Samu Kerevi for this slot.


11 Josh Adams (Wales): It was wonderful to see the exceptionally talented Semi Radradra (Fiji) in full flight on the biggest stage, while Makazole Mapimpi (South Africa) and Marika Koroibete (Australia) were also superb, but it was potentially a defining tournament for the Welsh flyer. The 24-year-old has taken to Test rugby excellently and has now shown the world what he is about after ending the World Cup as the top try-scorer. It wasn’t just his instincts for the line that stood out either but also Adams’ ability to make breaks and create opportunities for others.


10 Handre Pollard (South Africa): It is perhaps harsh on George Ford, who marshalled England’s backline well during the World Cup, while Wales’ Dan Biggar, France’s Romain Ntamack and New Zealand’s Richie Mo’unga had their moments of brilliance, but Pollard was consistent throughout and was simply magnificent in the final. Kicked well out of hand and off the tee, and always did the basics well, but the Springbok fly-half was also a threat when the opportunity presented itself, which kept defences honest.


9 Faf de Klerk (South Africa): Was strangely criticised within South Africa for kicking too much, but all he was doing was following a game plan and he did it to perfection. Box-kicks were accurate and varied, while his service was sharp from the base when the Springboks got into the right areas to attack. De Klerk was also outstanding in the final as he guided the team around the field. Elsewhere, Japan’s Yutaka Nagare, Wales’ Gareth Davies and New Zealand’s Aaron Smith enjoyed fine tournaments, but the South African takes it.


8 Kazuki Himeno (Japan): Duane Vermeulen shone for South Africa but Himeno gets the nod after coming to the fore with several excellent performances during the Brave Blossoms’ fairytale run to the quarter-finals. Himeno was one of Japan’s standout players and delivered his best performance in their stunning victory over Ireland during the pool stages. The 25-year-old came into Japan’s starting XV due to an injury to their first-choice number eight, Amanaki Mafi, but although Mafi had recovered by the time of the play-offs, he had to be satisfied with a place on the bench with Himeno firmly entrenched in the starting XV.


7 Tom Curry (England): Curry’s team-mate Sam Underhill was superb and wore the number seven jersey in most matches but the Sale Sharks man is mainly an openside flanker and, although he played mostly on the other side of the scrum, he was arguably England’s best player at the World Cup. The 21-year-old was colossal on defence and attack and came of age during England’s shock triumph over New Zealand in the semi-finals where his breakdown work – in tandem with Underhill – played a big part in the All Blacks’ downfall.


6 Pieter-Steph du Toit (South Africa): The Springboks’ success was largely due to the efforts of their brilliant pack and the Stormers stalwart was at the forefront of that forward effort with several stellar performances. Du Toit would be a dream player for any coach as he is a superb ball carrier, a tackling machine and a handy option in the lineouts. He was a worthy winner of the World Rugby Player of the Year award and comes in ahead of Wales’ Aaron Wainwright, who was one of the finds of the tournament and amongst his country’s best players.


5 Alun Wyn Jones (Wales): The Wales captain struggled to keep up against the All Blacks’ fast-paced style of play in the third place play-off but, prior to that, he hardly put a foot wrong as his side reached the semi-finals. As usual, the veteran led his troops well and also brought his A-game to the lineouts which was a big part of his side’s success. Despite his advancing years, he was superb throughout and beats out Lood de Jager of South Africa.


4 Maro Itoje (England): Although Brodie Retallick did well once he hit top form for the All Blacks, it was still not enough to get in ahead of Itoje, who was one of England’s best players at the tournament. His brilliance in the lineouts is well documented, especially in his side’s semi-final win over the All Blacks where he went head-to-head with true greats of the game in Retallick and Sam Whitelock and came out on top. Itjoe also did well as a ball carrier and on defence and it’s scary to think that he is only 25 and yet to reach his peak.


3 Kyle Sinckler (England): Another young Englishman who makes our team after several outstanding showings for the tournament’s eventual runners-up. Sinckler’s try against the Wallabies in the quarter-finals will live long in the memories of England fans and, apart from his superb finishing ability, he also showed off his fine handling and offloading skills as England swept all before them on their way to the final. Also stood up well in the scrums and is preferred to South Africa’s Frans Malherbe and Nepo Laulala of New Zealand.


2 Shota Horie (Japan): Jamie George (England), Ken Owens (Wales) and Julián Montoya (Argentina) were all superb at various stages of the World Cup but we’ve opted for Horie, who emptied the tank in several matches for the Brave Blossoms. The 33-year-old was a vital cog in the Japanese wheel and impressed with his accurate throw-ins at the lineouts, while his play in the loose was superb on a consistent basis and he also stood out on defence.


1 Tendai Mtawarira (South Africa): The Springbok veteran is enjoying a resurgence despite being in the twilight of his career and was one of his team’s heroes as they marched to their third tournament win. Mtawarira shone in the execution of his core duties, particularly his scrummaging. It was superb in most matches but especially in the final when he put in a dominant display at the set-piece against England’s Dan Cole. Japan’s Keita Inagaki was next best.

Nov 04, 2019, 18:02

Very good team too. Glad they included Beast...there will always be different opinions...I would have included Duane...and Brodie/Eben ahead of Itoje, but these teams will always be subjective...

Nov 04, 2019, 18:10

Probably a much more realistic team than the prejudiced production of Mozart.  

Nov 04, 2019, 18:15

Two Japanese forwards and Wynn pack would crush those pretenders....and Kerevi/ Vakatawa would Vak Allende/Tuilagi.

Stick with moz.

Nov 04, 2019, 18:24

Planet Rugby Team.....3 Japanese and 1 All about that!

Nov 04, 2019, 18:33

Dimness when did that crushing happened?

Nov 04, 2019, 18:37

Kerevi was a long way ahead of Damian. Many 12s were. Himeno over Thor sums it up, lacking credibility. The Aussie debutante at 13 was probably the best 13 I saw at the World Cup. Too many poor selections above. When we begin to discuss the output of these players, we see a divide between those who follow what they hear and those who have discerned matters themselves - the latter with significantly more information to discuss. 

Nov 04, 2019, 19:03

Ag foeitog - still on about the upper body weakness of De Allende.   There was only two games where a comparison  between De Allende and Kerevi could be made - namely the round robin game between Wales and Australia and the semi between Wales and SA.   

In that game Kerevi gained more meters  in carries - but the rest of his game - defense, ball handling and discipline was worse hat that of De Allende,   The huge difference was that de Akkende scored a try and  contributed decisively to the Springbok victory,  

In the ret of the tests Kerevi played in this year he was not a significant factor and the reputation factor is what Mozart and the other dimwits counted on.   Incidentally Kerevi is reslly the slow crashballer - but very strong physically - very little creativity there.  

Happy Idiots Day to you.       

Nov 04, 2019, 19:31

Allende is the same player....unable to create.....poor on open field tackles, his miss on May was a try lost.....a hard yards runner who is unable to break tackles. 

All that happened is the Boks WC game plan suited his game. And then the Boks co-opted the Bok press to write him up, which they did. Gone were the questions....everything was good. And pretty soon that narrative became the reality, abetted by his try where Biggar never even tried to make the tackle

He played a scripted role in the Bok campaign, nothing more.

Nov 04, 2019, 19:32

Itoje for what exactly?

And no PSDT is laughable

de Allende was by far the best 12

Nov 04, 2019, 19:48

I like the Planet ruby team with a few adjustments. 

Itojer was bullied along with Courtney Cox in the final, neither of them gained a millimetre over the advantage line. Given they were pushed backwards in contact, my guess is that their average metres gained was a negative figure in the final. Eztebeth looked good in the final, but most of the SA locks could be better than this plodder in a physical battle. 

Alwyn Jones corpse that is taped up, is still a good player- or at least what is left of it, happy to include in the team. 

Malherbe ahead of Sinclare, because the Boks had the most dominant scrum in the tournament. 

Vermeulen ahead of Sasuke. 

Nov 04, 2019, 20:03

Each to his own....I thought Savea was the best blindsider and the numbers back that up.

 Itoje was the only Pom player that gave us trouble....just look at the numbers .....Itoje made 16 tackles missing 1/Stephanie made 11 missing 1.....Itoje  made no metres in 5 runs but  beat a defender and made an offload/Stephanie made 2 metres in 4 runs and beat no defenders and made no offloads.... Itoje took a bunch of lineouts/Stephanie took none.

But Itoje was useless and Stephanie was the best player in the world! These teams are all bs with one All emotional twaddle.

Nov 04, 2019, 20:05

Do like the look of the  Planet Rugby -Team of the Tournament is more to my preferred selection.

I also thought that the Blossoms #2 did an outstanding job all round but differ on the #8 Vermeulen who was outstanding in all games.

Those would be my selection changes to their team.

Nov 04, 2019, 20:12

Itoje did stuff all in that game that was of any consequence much like his campaign as a whole but for his game against NZ which was hardly earth shattering.

He was more of a nuisance than imposing

Retallick was far more prominent in the 3rd place playoff than Itoje all WC

Lood, Etzebeth and RG have all been better than Itoje so has Ryan of Ireland, AJ of Wales, Id take the Oz locks over Itoje. He is another Mostert just a better version

Most hyped player in the game. Good player not great. At 1.95m he should be a blindside where he often plays for Sarries

Nov 04, 2019, 20:18

Itoje took lineouts....came through our lineout and disrupted the maul, made more tackles than anybody on the park. But he did nothing. You are biased against this player Dave.

Nov 04, 2019, 20:33

Line outs, disruptions and tackling don’t do it for me when it comes to a lock

All test locks do that. I want physicality from my test locks - that’s not Itoje

He is more physical than Mostert, Ill give him that but great test lock he is not.

Did nothing all 6N and spent much of the WC doing nothing of note. Was good against the AB’s and nowhere against the Boks

Nov 04, 2019, 21:05

Moz's team has a number of errors. The following should also be in the team

Malherbe at tighthead. 

Lood at lock  - that pap guy Itoje was crunched in the final. Granted he was more physical than very pap matfiled but then so was my grandmother.

Steph of course at 7

Allende of course at 12.

Nov 04, 2019, 21:05

Moz's team has a number of errors. The following should also be in the team

Malherbe at tighthead. 

Lood at lock  - that pap guy Itoje was crunched in the final. Granted he was more physical than very pap matfiled but then so was my grandmother.

Steph of course at 7

Allende of course at 12.

Nov 04, 2019, 21:07

Agreed I’d have Malherbe ahead of Sinckler

Nov 04, 2019, 21:08

Itoje has never dominated when Eben was on the field...good player with skills to burn, but not a classic 4 like Brodie or Eben....Eben ahead of him sny day of the week! RG too...if he was a Saffa, they would have tried him at 7 or 8.

Nov 04, 2019, 21:09

Sarries play Itoje at blindside

Nov 04, 2019, 21:15

Blindside is where he belongs. Not really a test lock.

Nov 04, 2019, 21:17

Our tight 5 was the best unit at the RWC...hard to omit anyone...hell, both our front rows are world class...and our replacement locks....we had a great team!

Nov 04, 2019, 22:56

Which is why I have Eben in my team.....Itoje is more of a number 5 lock, where he would eat up Wynn Jones. But the biggest talent out there is RG Snyman. Playing for the ABs he would be one of the greats.

Nov 04, 2019, 23:25

Agreed Draad give many any of our real locks over other sides locks.

Eben, Lood, RG and PSDT top my list along with Retallick, Barrett and Ryan of Ireland

Nov 04, 2019, 23:39

You're all idiots, not a single mention of Semi Radradra.

Nov 04, 2019, 23:41


Nov 05, 2019, 00:14

I never select the Semi's.....he's either the whole Colon or he doesn't get my vote.

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