Champions Cup: Team of the Tournament

Date published: May 17 2016

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With the Champions Cup now sitting in Saracens' trophy cabinet after their win in Lyon, we sat down to select our Team of the Tournament.

As expected Mark McCall's men have the most representatives so without further ado, let's get to it. Add your team in the comments below.

Champions Cup: Team of the Tournament

15 Charles Piutau (Wasps): The Ulster-bound back was rightly included on the shortlist for the player of the tournament award after several phenomenal performances for the semi-finalists. Piutau's counter-attacking was a sight to behold and he finished with the most clean breaks (16) as well as metres gained (764) in the competition. He was also rewarded with four tries for his efforts.

14 Joe Rokocoko (Racing 92): The veteran winger showed that he still has plenty to offer and was one of Racing 92's leading lights in their run to the final. The former All Black's experience proved invaluable throughout as he did well with ball in hand and also caught the eye in defence.

13 Peter Betham (Leicester): Made a big contribution in taking Leicester Tigers all the way to the Champions Cup semi-finals. The big centre was able to get the offloads away on many occasions and he got the Tigers over the advantage line with some big carries out wide. Betham made his tackles when called upon and contributed all over the field with his physical and hard working approach to the game.

12 Brad Barritt (Saracens): Underlined his value to English rugby with an impressive season at Saracens. He was strong in defence and made a big contribution to his team's championship winning efforts with his physical and hard running approach. Barritt also made his presence felt off the playing field as he urged his team to stay calm after they had beaten Wasps 24-17 in the semi-final.

11 Chris Wyles (Saracens): One of Sarries' star performers, the American international played a leading role in the English side's successful run to the title. Wyles shone on attack and finished just behind Thomas Waldrom and Vereniki Goneva in the try-scoring charts with five. He also impressed in his defensive duties.

10 Owen Farrell (Saracens): Guided Saracens to Champions Cup glory as he put in some tactically astute performances throughout their campaign. Farrell made the right decisions in the right areas of the field, he kicked the points over when required, made some big hits and got his team into space when the opportunity presented itself. He ended the campaign as the tournament's top points scorer with 127 points which included 31 penalties and 17 conversions.

9 Maxime Machenaud (Racing 92): Combined well with All Black World Cup winner Dan Carter in taking Racing 92 all the way to the final. The French international came to the party as he varied his game on attack and defence. Machenaud made some good decisions in the final third of the field and proved to be a reliable goal-kicker throughout the campaign.

8 Billy Vunipola (Saracens): It's been a special season for the England star, who looks fitter and more confident than ever. Huge efforts carrying the ball throughout the knockout stages, as he gets the nod ahead of the ageless Racing 92 number eight Chris Masoe.

7 George Smith (Wasps): Deserves every single bit of praise lavished upon him from all corners this season after the work he's done with Wasps. Smith constantly made an impact with his work over the ball at the breakdown and tackled his body into the ground.

6 Michael Rhodes (Saracens): Quietly one of the signings of the season. Rhodes has added some extra athleticism to the Saracens' back row with his work at the lineout, but his defence and physicality were impressive. He gets in over Wenceslas Lauret, who finished the tournament with the most turnovers (12).

5 Luke Charteris (Racing 92): The rangy second-row was the tournament's top tackler with a whopping 118 hits whilst he also ended up finishing on top of the line-outs stolen category with six. Charteris was everywhere for Racing 92 as his stock continue to rise in the game.

4 Maro Itoje (Saracens): The European Player of the Year has put himself on the rugby map in 2016. A strong Six Nations amidst the Premiership and Champions Cup has seen him earn plenty of praise. Itoje ticks so many boxes as a player and has formed an excellent partnership with George Kruis.

3 Ben Tameifuna (Racing 92): Much like his uncle, Sona Taumalolo, the Auckland-born Tameifuna is known for his powerful scrummaging. His ability to make powerful carries and big hits that are felt even in the stands are testament of his physical prowess. The all-round clinical effort from the former Chiefs prop, on a regular basis, has made it very difficult to leave him out of this team.

2 Guilhem Guirado (Toulon): Despite their narrow 19-16 defeat at the hands of finalists Racing 92, Toulon's hooker was instrumental in putting positive performances on a weekly basis. The 29-year-old not only got his basics at line-out and scrum time right but his strength at the breakdown was evident throughout some dominating displays from the three-time European champions.

1 Mako Vunipola (Saracens): Was a consistent stand-out performer for the newly crowned European champions each week in both the Premiership and Champions Cup competitions. Vunipola has been at the core of a dominating Saracens scrum, putting in big hits and making some valuable metres on the off chance that he does carry the ball.

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