Now that the dust has settled in the south, we thought it was only right to hand out praise to the stars of Super Rugby, Round 14.
Now that the dust has settled over in the southern hemisphere, Planet Rugby thought it was only right to hand out some praise to the stars of Super Rugby, Round 14.
Super Rugby Team of the Week: Round 14
15 Israel Folau (Waratahs): Just because Folau didn't score a try doesn't mean he wasn't impressive. His hunger for work was enormous and he made 107 metres, beating four defenders and making two clean breaks and three offloads. He also laid Horne's second try on a platter. Credit to Mike Harris.
14 Cornal Hendricks (Cheetahs): The former Blitzbokke star received a call-up to the Springboks training camp on Monday and it's easy to see why. His pace caused the Brumbies problems as Hendricks topped 50 metres. A mention for the excellent Tom Kingston of the Rebels.
13 Malakai Fekitoa (Highlanders): The soon-to-be All Blacks centre had another fine game in a tight contest against the Hurricanes. Fekitoa did the work in defence making 12 tackles but also beat five defenders going forward. Credit to Adam Ashley-Cooper after getting his first try of the season for the Waratahs.
12 Mitch Inman (Rebels): Underrated in the Rebels midfield, Inman was a workhorse on both sides of the ball as the Rebels defeated the Reds for the first time. Inman made ten tackles and 11 carries, beating a couple of defenders and supplying key offloads.
11 Rob Horne (Waratahs): Two tries for the Waratahs back in Sydney continued Horne's fine run of form, the first an absolutely beauty as he cut in and scythed through the defence. Four clean breaks, six defenders beaten and 106 metres made plus ten tackles; Horne was a machine.
10 Francois Steyn (Sharks): Tough to keep out Bernard Foley here but the enormity of Steyn's performance given the circumstances in Christchurch deserves praise. Down to 14-men for 50 minutes, Steyn kicked ten points, provided a brilliant assist and beat three defenders in a gritty outing.
9 Luke Burgess (Rebels): Was replaced after injuring his knee midway through the second half against the Reds in Brisbane but by then he had done enough to win his personal duel with Wallaby incumbent Will Genia. Burgess proved a handful on attack, gained 66 metres in the process and was rewarded with two tries, of which the first is a contender for the best five-pointer of the round. A mention for the Hurricanes' TJ Perenara.
8 Boom Prinsloo (Cheetahs): Victories against the Brumbies don't come cheap and Prinsloo's work rate was phenomenal, making a phenomenal 20 carries, beating five defenders in the process. A shout out too for Duan Vermulen.
7 Nizaam Carr (Stormers): Won the man-of-the-match award in the win over the Western Force after another hard-working display. Carr linked well with his back-line, made an impact at the breakdowns and was one of the Stormers' top defenders with 14 tackles made. A good allround display. A mention for Force tackle machine, Matt Hodgson, who made a whopping 17 hits!
6 Tera Mtembu (Sharks): He started at openside in Christchurch but we're not too fussed about switching Mtembu since he essentially had play the role of both flankers in Jean Deysel's absence. And when Willem Alberts spent ten minutes in the bin, became a one-man back row!
5 Stephan Lewies (Sharks): Perhaps the toughest pick of the week with a number of standout candidates. But possession was everything for the 14-Sharks and Lewies was a reliable line-out target, taking nine clean catches at line-out time. Mentions too for Michael Rhodes who made 16 tackles and took 10 line-outs as well as Joe Wheeler who made 18 hits.
4 Jeremy Thrush (Hurricanes): What a season Thrush is having for the 'Canes! We counted 12 times that he had his team going forward after carrying the ball. He also won six line-outs. A mention too for Ruan Botha.
3 Jeffrey Toomaga-Allen (Hurricanes): Possesses the full skill-set. Toomaga-Allen made 30 metres from seven carries and produced 13 tackles, beating a couple of defenders along the way.
2 Stephen Moore (Brumbies): First-rate as ever, Moore's late try gave the Brumbies hope of a fightback but it was too late. Still, Moore worked tirelessly and the Brumbies line-out was on song.
1 Toby Smith (Rebels): Narrowly edging out Ben Franks for this spot is his fellow Kiwi, who made 20 metres on the run in Brisbane and provided an assist for a try.