Super Rugby Pacific: Congestion in try-scoring charts after round eight

Dylan Coetzee
Super Rugby Pacific: Split with Wright, Aumua and Barrett

After eight rounds of the 2023 Super Rugby Pacific season, Planet Rugby takes a closer look at the players who are key to the exciting rugby on show and who leads the rest in the respective individual categories.

Top try-scorers

After another round with several teams putting their feet up over the weekend, there is no change at the top of the try-scoring charts with the trio of Chiefs’ Shaun Stevenson, Crusaders’ Leicester Fainga’anuku and Reds’ Jordie Petaia all locked at seven tries apiece.

Runners-up: Whilst there was no movement at the top it gave the chasing pack a chance to catch up with six stars now on six tries and only one back of the leaders. Blues and All Blacks star Mark Telea is one alongside Salesi Rayasi who is joined by Hurricanes team-mate Cam Roigard. Reds centre Josh Flook, Western Force wing Zach Kibirige and Fijian Drua centre Iosefo Masi have also crossed the whitewash on six occasions. It looks set to be an interesting race to see who will end up as top try-scorer.

Top points

The week off for the Crusaders means that fly-half Richie Mo’unga falls out of the top spot in another hotly contested category in Super Rugby Pacific.

Jordie Barrett’s strong form from the kicking tee continued this week and shot the All Black to the top of the pile with 73 points. Consistency has been clear throughout for the versatile star, who is gunning for that New Zealand 12 jersey.

Runners-up: Mo’unga’s 69 points are only good enough for third as Chiefs maestro Damian McKenzie shot past and into second after a stunning showing last weekend. He sits on 71 points.

Top tackler

Fraser McReight extended his lead as the competition’s leader with the most tackles as made after another strong shift against Moana Pasifika last weekend.

The Wallaby made an impressive 14 tackles to take his grand total to a whopping 114 in only eight games played. Outstanding work rate from the flank.

Runners-up: With the Crusaders and Tom Christie resting last weekend, Brumbies tearaway Rory Scott edged his way into second spot and is only one tackle short of a century.

Top carrier

Harry Wilson’s relentless carrying showed no signs of stopping as the number eight notched up another impressive total of 13 carries for the Reds against Moana.

Almost every game the star reaches a double-figure carry count and with 115 total carries will be a difficult player to catch in this category.

Runners-up: Blues number eight Hoskins Sotutu lost huge ground this week and sits in second on 84 whilst Jordie Barrett has edged into the top three with 80 carries made.

Defenders beaten

For the first time this season, there has been a change at the top of this category with Moana Pasifika’s Levi Aumua passing team-mate Timoci Tavatavanawai after beating a ridiculous eight defenders against the Reds in a blockbuster display.

This means Aumua has risen to a total of 45 defenders beaten in his eight games this season.

Runners-up: Tavatavanawai is only three behind his team-mate, whilst Telea is in third with 39 defenders beaten.

Running metres

Brumbies outside back Tom Wright remains in charge of this category and even with a fairly low tally (by his standards) of 45 metres made against the Drua last weekend he still has almost 100 metres on the next player.

Wright’s elusive running and clever attacking positioning is clearly paying its dividends, and Wallabies head coach Eddie Jones will be happy with the star’s efforts.

Runners-up: Wilson is in second place with 747 whilst Telea lurks in third with 745 but has played less games than the duo ahead of him

Line-outs won

Again the Brumbies hold onto this category firmly, with both their second-rowers in the top two, led by Nick Frost, who is eight takes ahead of Caderyn Neville on 35.

The Brumbies’ driving maul and targeting of territory means the line-out is that much more crucial, and the duo are proving their worth in that regard.

Runners-up: Again there is only one New Zealander in the top 10, and this time it’s Brodie Retallick. Meanwhile, Josh Caham remains in third this week.

READ MORE: Super Rugby Pacific Team Tracker: Crusaders’ big guns return for Melbourne Rebels clash