Super Rugby: Team of the Week

Date published: May 16 2016

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Now that the dust has settled after Round Twelve of Super Rugby, we select the players that stood out over the weekend.

The Lions and Highlanders feature heavily in our line-up after their impressive wins. Read on to see who made the cut and be sure to comment below.

15 Israel Dagg (Crusaders): Put in a superb performance in the number fifteen jersey as he went head to head with All Black full-back Ben Smith. Dagg was impressive on defence and composed under the high ball and his efforts were rewarded with a good try in the 80th minute of the game. Joaquín Tuculet was also impressive for the Jaguares.

14 Waisake Naholo (Highlanders): Makes our selection for the second week running as his brace of tries helped his team to victory over the Crusaders in a pulsating New Zealand derby. Naholo was pure pace and power on the wing and in this type of form the Highlanders will be hard to stop in their march to the Super Rugby knockout stage. Hurricanes finisher Jason Woodward was our next in line.

13 Lionel Mapoe (Lions): Put in a powerful performance at centre as his direct and hard running style earned him a hat-trick of tries against the Blues. Mapoe also made his tackles and got the Lions moving forward with every carry in another very accomplished performance.

12 Matt Faddes (Highlanders): Faddes put in a fantastic performance at centre for the Highlanders in their 34-26 victory over the Crusaders. He crossed the whitewash on two occasions, the first try registered as early as the second minute of the game and the second five-pointer coming as a result of a 40-metre break up field.

11 Wes Goosen (Hurricanes): Goosen made his Super Rugby debut for the Hurricanes against the Reds on Saturday and what a performance the South African-born winger put in as he scored the opening try of the game and showed plenty of promise with his running lines, leaving the Reds at sixes and sevens on many occasions. Courtnall Skosan was also impressive for the Lions in their home triumph.

10 Elton Jantjies (Lions): Outstanding in guiding the Lions to a morale boosting 43-5 victory at Ellis Park. Jantjies set the tone for what was to come with a well-timed cross kick which found winger Skosan free on the left sideline for the second try of the game. The fly-half continued to take the ball to the line and his distribution skills created several opportunities on attack. Pat Lambie deserves a shout for his kicking masterclass against the Jaguares while Richie Mo'unga was also good for the Crusaders.

9 Nick Phipps (Waratahs): Nick Phipps was at his very best against the Bulls on Saturday as his two tries helped the Sydney based team to a deserved victory over the visitors. Phipps' quick distribution at the breakdown caused all sorts of problems for the Bulls and his sniping breaks left the visitors' defence tracking back throughout the game.

8 Luke Whitelock (Highlanders): His best performance in a Highlanders jersey? Maybe so as Whitelock came back to haunt his former team on Friday with an impressive showing. It was mighty close between Whitelock and Warren Whiteley of the Lions though, who was outstanding against the Blues.

7 Jaco Kriel (Lions): Arguably the player of the round. Kriel seemed to be everywhere for the Lions as he made plenty of carries and tackles while linking nicely with his backline in wet weather conditions. Still just 26, he has so much potential and is preferred to Waratahs skipper Michael Hooper.

6 Elliot Dixon (Highlanders): Surely now on the All Blacks radar if he wasn't already, Dixon's battle with Jordan Taufua was something special on Friday, with Dixon just about getting the nod over his Kiwi rival. Scott Fardy was also impressive for the Brumbies.

5 Tomás Lavanini (Jaguares): Was at the forefront of the Argentine side's forward onslaught in a narrow defeat against the Sharks in Buenos Aires and edges out Stormers enforcer Pieter-Steph du Toit. Lavanini impressed at his core duties, was a willing ball carrier and also did his bit in defence with a handful of tackles.

4 Rory Arnold (Brumbies): Arnold came to the fore with a busy shift in the Brumbies' victory over the Rebels in Melbourne and was rewarded with a deserved try after several impressive carries. Also put his body on the line in defence with six hits and was his team's go-to-man at the line-outs.

3 Julian Redelinghuys (Lions): The Springbok returned to action after recovering from injury and was in fine form in the scrums. Also defended well, especially on the fringes of the rucks and mauls, and keeps out Owen Franks of the Crusaders.

2 Malcolm Marx (Lions): Another player who did well on his comeback from injury, Marx delivered a solid performance at the coalface of the Lions' forward effort against the Blues. Despite the wet weather conditions, Marx thrived in the forward exchanges especially with ball in hand and beats out Andrew Ready of the Reds.

1 Reg Goodes (Hurricanes): One of the unsung heroes of the Hurricanes' campaign, Goodes impressed with a fine all-round display against the Reds in Wellington. He caught the eye with a solid scrummaging display, and also did well in defence with nine tackles. Comes in ahead of Dylan Smith of the Lions.

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