Europe’s leading cup competition was back with a bang in Round 5. This is our selection of the best performers from last weekend.
European Champions Cup Team of the Week: Round Five
15 Leigh Halfpenny (Toulon): A kicking masterclass from the Wales full-back against Ulster, as Halfpenny slotted seven conversions and two penalties to account for 20 of his side’s 60 points. Has settled well into life with Toulon after that rocky start.
14 Chris Ashton (Saracens): Two tries, two smart finishes from the forgotten England winger. He should certainly buy Chris Wyles a drink after his team-mate’s smart grubber infield, which ended with Ashton’s first try, while Simon Zebo stood no chance when Ashton went over for his second.
13 Jonathan Joseph (Bath): Such an audacious moment of brilliance in the build-up to Francois Louw’s try, when Joseph led Toulouse on a merry chase after collecting his chip over the top. Four clean breaks and four defenders beaten tell you that he tore the French club’s defence to shreds.
12 Ian Madigan (Leinster): Joseph’s centre partner Kyle Eastmond was also very good in France, but Madigan gets our nod. 15 points from the boot and as assist win him a spot at inside centre, but Ireland will be needing him at 10 soon enough with the Six Nations looming and Jonathan Sexton out.
11 DTH van der Merwe (Glasgow Warriors): The Canadian international bagged a hat-trick in the Pro12 giants win over Montpellier, even if the pass for his first try was forward. No denying his others scores though, as Glasgow caught the opposition napping with Van der Merwe finishing sharply from close range. Six defenders beaten too.
10 Camille Lopez (Clermont): The Top 14 leaders needed a steady hand to guide the ship up at Sale, with Lopez delivering in grim conditions. The fly-half beat five defenders and scored 17 points in a tense contest, which Clermont finished on top of. Nicol