European Champions Cup Team of the Week – Round 6


Mako Vunipola

1 – Mako Vunipola (Saracens)
Definitely stepped up in the lead up to the Six Nations in an outstanding performance in the loose, scoring one try, unlucky not to get another and holding his own against Kieran Brookes.

2 – Tom Cruse (Wasps)
Finished a beautiful le Roux dink-over-the-top, almost scored a second try with an intercept and was solid in the set-price in all-round great display.

3 – Jake Cooper-Woolly (Wasps)
Impressive 60 minute performance from the tighthead who carried commitedly, scrummaged well and got a try from close-range for his efforts.

4 – Joe Launchbury (Wasps)
Another typical Launchbury performance with relentless work rate in attack, defence and set piece and also was very good at captaining the Wasps.

5 – Elliott Stooke (Bath)
Part of a powerful engine room second row with James Philips, Stooke carried very well and made a lovely offload to Zach Mercer to set up a try.

6 – Matt Fagerson (Glasgow)
Shocked Exeter’s defence with his hard-fought robustness in both defence and attack and his good play rewarded with an outstanding team try to his name and a man-of-the-match award.

7 – Brendon O’Connor (Leicester)
Really rattled Racing ball at the breakdown, was outstanding in defence and scored a team try off a rolling maul, a shame his efforts went down in defeat.

8 – Zach Mercer (Bath)
Mercer has really stepped up and showed he can play on the big stage with his performance at Benetton which was rewarded with a try off the maul and a promotion from apprentice player in Eddie Jones EPS squad.

9 – Maxime Machenaud (Racing)
I’m sure Jaques Brunel will be delighted with Machenaud’s form at the moment and on Sunday his control of the game and his 18 points from the tee ensured a win in a tight and nitty-gritty game at Welford Road.

10 – Owen Farrell (Saracens)
Orchestrated another thumping of Northampton, contributed 27 points off the tee and provided a try-assist by throwing an audacious dummy, making the break and throwing a pin-point accurate pass for Marcelo Bosch to score.

11 – Keith Earls (Munster)
Scored in the corner for Munster’s first try and set up Simon Zebo with a scintillating run from his own half, a very good performance from the Irishman.

12 – Robbie Henshaw (Leinster)
Henshaw was very robust and committed in defence and spun out of the tackle to finish well in the corner for Leinster.

13 – Hadleigh Parkes (Scarlets)
Big in defence by handling Toulon’s dangerman Semi Radradra but it was his attack grabbing the headlines as he scored one try, this Kiwi-turned Welshman is in red-hot form at the moment and pivotal to Scarlets qualifying for the quarterfinals for the first time in 11 years.

14 – James Lowe (Leinster)
It was a quiet week for the right wingers therefore I’m moving a left winger to the right, James Lowe definitely showed his class for Leinster on Saturday and set up a try by running down the blindside.

15 – Stuart Hogg (Glasgow)
Made the difference as the Glaswegian was very threatening with his pace and typically unorthodox fullback play in his try-scoring return for the Warriors.

By Jacob Bassford

13 thoughts on “European Champions Cup Team of the Week – Round 6

  1. Can’t agree with your choice at 6. Jack Willis head and shoulders above any other 6 and back rower over the weekend.

  2. Sorry, but holding your own against Kieran Brooks in the tight is not exactly a recommendation. He has been hammered by several loose heads this season and is nowhere near international level. Surprised not to see any of the La Rochelle front row in there.

    1. Andy, are you saying that Mako Vunipola is nowhere near international level? A bit of a ridiculous statement considering he continues to be picked by Eddie Jones and was also Gatland’s first choice for the Lions?
      Granted he doesn’t always hold up as well as others in the scrum but, with the right people behind him in the pack he can do a better job than most. One of the best props in the loose and a higher workrate than any other prop I’ve seen!

      1. “He has been hammered by several loose heads this season and is nowhere near international level.” – I would pressume since he says hammered by loose heads that he means Brookes.

        Fair comment, to ‘only’ hold your own against someone like Brookes doesn’t suggest anything particularly special. We know Mako is the best loose head in the world outside of the scrum. In there he is pretty average really.

      2. No Dazza, not at all. I think he is a terrific player. What I actually said was that holding his own against Kieron Brooks, who I don’t rate at all, is not sufficient justification for putting him in the team of the week on its own. His loose play was excellent, but looking at some of the French and Irish front rows at present I do have some concerns as to whether we will hold our own in the tight in the six nations.

  3. On Cooper-Woolly, I do wonder if Jones is looking at him. He is probably the best TH in England in the scrum, and certainly the closest to Cole from the other options. He is always busy in the loose too.

    1. I am a big fan of Cooper-Woolly too, surprised he wasn’t called up now Sinckler has been ruled out with injury. Henry Thomas called up instead – his form has improved this season certainly, and he has had a lot of injuries, but seems a long time since he was tipped as the next front row star for England!

      1. Yeh I can see the logic of Sinkler and Williams ahead of Cooper-Woolly but I struggle with how he can be behind Thomas.

        Jones clearly is not a big fan of some of the Wasps players…


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