5 SA players in Super Rugby team of the season
Cape Town - Five South Africans have cracked the nod for the official Super Rugby team of the season.
Beaten finalists the Lions have three representatives - prop Jacques van Rooyen hooker Malcolm Marx and flank Jaco Kriel - while the Stormers duo of lock Pieter-Steph du Toit and wing Cheslin Kolbe were also included.
Remarkably, no player from the champion Crusaders outfit made the team unveiled on SANZAAR’s official website.
SANZAAR also gave a reason why no Crusaders player made the grade: “The fact that there are no Crusaders players in the team perhaps typifies the cliché that the whole team is greater than the sum of its parts, with the Christchurch side boasting a team that works well as a unit rather than relying on standout performances of a few members to get them across the line.”
SANZAAR said the team of the season was made up from the top scorers in the Opta Index, based on their average per 80-minute tally, with only players who had accumulated at least 800 minutes eligible for selection.
Chiefs fullback Damian McKenzie was named player of the season.
SANZAAR's 2017 Super Rugby team of the season:
15 Damian McKenzie (Chiefs), 14 Cheslin Kolbe (Stormers), 13 Samu Kerevi (Reds), 12 Ngani Laumape (Hurricanes), 11 James Lowe (Chiefs), 10 Beauden Barrett (Hurricanes), 9 Augustine Pulu (Blues), 8 Amanaki Mafi (Melbourne Rebels), 7 Ardie Savea (Hurricanes), 6 Jaco Kriel (Lions), 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit (Stormers), 4 Guido Petti Pagadizábal (Jaguares), 3 Allan Alaalatoa (Brumbies), 2 Malcolm Marx (Lions), 1 Jacques van Rooyen (Lions)