Team of the Week: Super Rugby

Date published: March 9 2015

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

The Stormers understandly feature heavily in our selection after extending their unbeaten start to four matches, while plenty of new faces feature.

Super Rugby Team of the Week: Round 4

15 Cheslin Kolbe (Stormers): Withstood the Sharks defence and was a complete menace with his quick feet when attacking with the ball in hand. Belies his small size with real bravery under the high ball. Kolbe made 86 metres off 14 carries, beating five defenders. A mention for the ever-excellent Ben Smith.

14 Peter Betham (Waratahs) A long-range try was just reward for the 'Tahs wing, who beat an impressive eight defenders against the Reds. Blues winger Frank Halai did his bit with four defenders beaten and made 71m with ball in hand.

13 Matt Carraro (Waratahs): The 'Tahs centre's break to set up Bernard Foley's try took the wind out of the Reds' sails. Carraro was also one of the top tacklers in Brisbane. A mention for JJ Englebrecht, who provided the Bulls with momentum and Malakai Fekitoa, who was difficult to get hold of.

12 Damien de Allende (Stormers): The Springbok centre's fine start to the season continued with another barnstorming performance at Newlands. Brushed off Marcell Coetzee and Pat Lambie at one point with ease. Six defenders beaten and 56 metres from ten carries for him. Another South African centre, Jan Serfontein, went well for the Bulls. Don't be surprised to see them partnered in the Springbok midfield at some stage.

11 Patrick Osborne (Highlanders): A good weekend for left wingers as Joe TomaneRaymond Rhule and James Lowe all impressed, but we've gone with the physical Highlander after his great try against the Chiefs, cutting infield to score. Went past five defenders in total.

10 Handré Pollard (Bulls) Looked every bit an international ten on Saturday as his try, three conversions, five penalties and a drop-goal helped the Bulls to a 39-20 victory over the Cheetahs. His combination with Serfontein should be nurtured for both franchise and country, with Pollard doing enough to see off Bernard Foley of the Waratahs, who put in a strong try-scoring performance at the Reds.

9 Nic White (Brumbies) Heading to Montpellier after the World Cup but he is playing some of best rugby before then, with the Force struggling to cope with his game-management. White scored a try, tackled well and moved his team around the park superbly in Canberra.

8 Warren Whiteley (Lions) A courageous defensive effort from the Lions was led by their skipper who topped the tackle stats in Round Four. A mention too for Ben McCalman, who carried well and was a good lineout option for the Force.

7 Sam Cane (Chiefs) Five offloads for a flanker aint bad! Plenty of carries and offloads too for the All Black flank. Luke Braid deserves a mention for his effort in taking the ball forward in a frustrating night for the Blues.

6 Lappies Labuschagne (Bulls) Up against his old team, Labuschagne continued to impress with his workrate as the tournament's top tackler. Almost 50m gain with ball in hand is a solid return for a flanker. A shout out for Warwick Tecklenburg for another tireless defensive effort.

5 Steve Mafi (Force) First a mention goes to Sharks lock Pieter-Steph du Toit for his strong showing at Newlands, but there was no avoiding Mafi's all-action shift. The veteran scored a try, beat several tacklers, made hits and was a line-out option. Superb.

4 Rory Arnold (Brumbies) The towering lock put in a strong shift against the Force, scoring the game's first try while second-row partner Sam Carter racked up the tackles. Arnold gets in though, seeing off Lion Franco Mostert, who was a nuisance to the Blues.

3 Ben Alexander (Brumbies) Hadn't scored for a while but crossed on Friday to cap a decent effort against Pek Cowan. Cheetahs prop Coenie Oosthuizen was his usual abrasive self as he continues to improve in the number three shirt while Julian Redlinghuys scrummed well and made nine tackles in Albany. Good news for South Africa.

Scarra Ntubeni (Stormers) A great shift from Stormers hooker as part of a dominant scrummagging effort, but Ntubeni was also so sharp around the field and made three turnovers as he outperformed Bismarck du Plessis. A mention for the Chiefs' stalwart Hika Elliott. 

1 Steven Kitschoff (Stormers)Big outing for the looshead against Matt Stevens, making mincemeat of his opposite man in the absence of Jannie du Plessis. A really important part of the Stormers scrum considering the inexperience of Alistair Vermaak and Oli Kebble behind him.

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