Cape Town - With Springbok captain Jean de
Villiers out injured, young Damian de Allende has made a good case to occupy
the vacant No 12 jersey for the national side, after a string of solid
performances in this year’s Super Rugby competition.
Team selections are often subjective and
while De Allende has impressed all and sundry, the statistics taken from the
Vodacom Rugby App confirm his domination in midfield this season.
In his third season playing at the highest
level, the 23-year-old De Allende has emerged as one of the biggest talents in
South African rugby.
De Allende’s presence in the midfield has
been instrumental in the Stormers’ campaign so far this season.
The elusive runner’s class this season is
backed by his domination of the Defenders Beaten category after 11 rounds in
the premier tournament in the Southern Hemisphere.
The big strong centre has had the better of
the opposition on 40 occasions to top the category with the fleet-footed Israel
Folau of the Waratahs in second place with 34.
Behind them are Waisake Naholo (30) of the
Highlanders, Hurricanes wing Jualian Savea (28), and Charles Piutau (27) of the
De Allende demonstrated his abilities to
bamboozle the opposition in his side’s 15-13 victory over the Bulls in Cape
Town last Saturday.
He cracked the top-five for Round 11 with
the four defenders he beat along with Francois Hougaard (Bulls), Harold Vorster
(Lions), Joe Pietersen (Cheetahs) and Pierre Spies (Bulls).
The Chiefs’ Tim Nanai-Williams topped the
category with eight, with Bulls lock Jacques du Plessis sharing second place
with Ma'a Nonu (Hurricanes), Sean McMahon (Rebels) and Tom Marshall (Chiefs) with six each.
De Allende’s 13 Clean Breaks is the fourth
best so far this season behind Waisake Naholo of the Highlanders with 16.
The Crusaders’ Nemani Nadolo occupies
second place with 15, while James Lowe of the Chiefs and the Hurricanes’ Julian
Savea sharing third spot with 14 each.
He also makes it into the top-10 in terms
of Carries with his 95 for eighth place compared to category leader Folau with
De Allende is not without his faults and if
he wants to become the finished product he will have to work on his defence.
He has missed the fourth most tackles so
far this season, slipping 19 for an unwanted blemish behind his name.
The Missed Tackles category is crowded with
South African players with six players from our shores at the top of the
Cheetahs flyhalf Joe Pietersen tops the
category missing 23 with the Sharks’ Mouritz Botha (22) and Torsten van Jaarsveld
(21) following behind him.
Vodacom Rugby App statistics:
Defenders Beaten (overall):
1. Damian De Allende (Stormers) - 40
2. Israel Folau (Waratahs) - 34
3. Waisake Naholo (Highlanders) - 30
4. Julian Savea (Hurricanes) - 28
5. Charles Piutau (Blues) - 27
1. Tim Nainai Williams (Chiefs) - 8
2. Jacques du Plessis (Bulls) - 6
- Ma'a Nonu (Hurricanes)
- Sean McMahon (Rebels)
- Tom Marshall (Chiefs)
3. Damian de Allende (Stormers) - 5
- François Hougaard (Bulls)
- Harold Vorster (Lions)
- Joe Pietersen (Cheetahs)
- Pierre Spies (Bulls)
Clean Breaks (overall):
1. Waisake Naholo (Highlanders) - 16
2. Nemani Nadolo (Crusaders) - 15
3. James Lowe (Chiefs) - 14
4. Julian Savea (Hurricanes) - 14
5 Damian de Allende (Stormers) - 13
6. Cobus Reinach (Sharks) - 13
Missed Tackles (overall):
1. Joe Petersen (Cheetahs) - 23
2. Mouritz Botha (Sharks) - 22
3. Torsten van Jaarsveld (Cheetahs) - 21
4. Damian de Allende (Stormers) - 19
5. Carl Wegner (Cheetahs) - 17
6. Elton Jantjies (Lions) - 18