Premiership Team of the Season: Nick Easter singles out ‘world class’ Courtney Lawes as five Northampton Saints selected

James While
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Former England number eight Nick Easter picks his Premiership Team of the Season.

Former England number eight Nick Easter picks his Premiership Team of the Season.

Northampton Saints were crowned Premiership champions after they edged a never-say-die Bath side 25-21 in a brutal final at Twickenham on Saturday.

This season we teamed up with eToro, the official investing and trading partner of Premiership Rugby, to launch a new feature that saw us name a best XV from a famous face after every Premiership round for the remainder of the campaign.

We have now reached the Team of the Season stage and former England and Harlequins number eight and National 1 Coach of the Season with Chinnor, Nick Easter, joins James While to pick his side.

Premiership Team of the Season

15 George Furbank (Northampton Saints): A brilliant season for a thrilling player and one that’s really come into his own working that duel playmaker role with Fin Smith. I’m thrilled for the fella – although Tyrone Green pushed him all the way for Harlequins.

14 Immanuel Feyi-Waboso (Exeter Chiefs): Ridiculously explosive and an absolute game changer. 10 tries says it all, although a shout out for Sale Sharks’ Tom Roebuck, who was brilliant in the air all season.

13 Ollie Lawrence (Bath Rugby): Absolutely excellent all season and his improvement on both sides of the ball has seen him develop into a man that can play 12 or 13 at Test level. He sees off Henry Slade, who was impressive for Exeter with leadership assisting his game while he finished top points scorer overall. Meanwhile, Rob du Preez‘s excellence in three positions means I have to give him a mention too.

12 Benhard Janse van Rensburg (Bristol Bears): Absolutely massive for Bristol all season – an iconic player for them when they mounted their challenge. Manu Tuilagi was sorely missed by Sale in their semi-final as his power is irreplaceable, whilst Fraser Dingwall shone all year in the Saints backline.

11 Ollie Sleightholme (Northampton Saints): The winger’s fine form continued in the final as he grabbed yet another crucial try, taking his tally to 15 for the season. England must look at this guy now. Will Muir‘s aerial abilities were clear in the final and if you’re playing a kicking game there’s few finer.


10 George Ford (Sale Sharks): A very close call with Finn Russell starring for Bath and Fin Smith wonderful for Saints, but for me Fordy was once again a key man for Sale, showing immaculate game control and demonstrating just how far he’s come as a game controlling 10.

9 Alex Mitchell (Northampton Saints): Absolutely brilliant all season – when he fires so do Saints. To be honest I could have tossed a coin between him and Ben Spencer, who went toe to toe in the final with the Bath man probably edging the battle, but Mitchell again showed his big match temperament by getting over for the winner.


8 Ben Earl (Saracens): Absolutely huge as he dominated the gainline with some thundering carries and delivered a fine display both sides of the ball all year. Earl needs the ball in his hands as much as possible which is why I prefer him at eight to openside. A word for Alfie Barbeary, yanked off in the final but brilliant all season, whilst Jasper Wiese was consistent for Tigers.

7 Will Evans (Harlequins): A brilliant season from an openside that’s very much on the upward form slope and is amongst the very best over the ball. Tommy Reffell is a man in the same mould as ‘Wev’ and was brilliant for Tigers, and a shout out to Sam Underhill, massive in every aspect when fit.

Northampton Saints player ratings: ‘Relentless’ Courtney Lawes impresses in final act as youngsters bail out Alex Mitchell

6 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints): Absolutely world class in every aspect, the old war horse is easily my player of the season. He leaves a cavern of a hole for both club and country and his contribution to the sport puts him on pedestal as a true all-time great of the global game. I was tempted not to mention a runner-up at all, that’s the level of respect I have for Lawes, a man I played 19 Tests with – but Ethan Roots has developed into a great leader at Chiefs, whilst Juan Martin Gonzalez is almost every bit the player Lawes is for his own club, Saracens.

5 Joe Batley (Bristol Bears): Joe is a man I coached at Worcester and his game has reached the levels where international recognition can’t be far away. Alex Coles added real abrasion for Saints, whilst Charlie Ewels was Mr. Consistent for Bath.

4 Dafydd Jenkins (Exeter Chiefs): An absolutely brilliant season for a young leader who should go on the Lions tour next year. I’m not sure if lock or six is his best Test position but he’s a highly impressive player. Maro Itoje had his moments for Sarries, as did Rusi Tuima alongside Jenkins for Chiefs.

3 Thomas du Toit (Bath Rugby): A remarkable prop and a truly world class player – he plays both sides to Test standard, scores tries and steals ball like a fourth back-rower. The best signing of the season and an integral part of Bath’s resurgence. Trevor Davison added real steel to Saints and was one of the reasons for their set-piece improvement.

2 Curtis Langdon (Northampton Saints): The most dependable hooker out there this season with an awesome set-piece and great hands around the pitch. Bristol’s Harry Thacker is another that wouldn’t disgrace a Test side and he finished with an outstanding season, whilst a word for Theo Dan, surely starting to pressure his Test and club colleague Jamie George for a starting berth?

1 Bevan Rodd (Sale Sharks): His Lionel Messi impression certainly irked Owen Farrell in the comedy moment of the season but Rodd’s ball playing ability is quite something to behold. Fin Baxter made a big impact for Quins all year, and whilst Beno Obano might rue his last impact of the season, he can look back with pride on a mighty campaign for Bath.

READ MORE: Courtney Lawes: ‘At the end of the game I was actually pretty p****d off’