Pick Your RWC 2011 Team of the Tournament: The Backs

With the forwards selected, it’s now time to choose your back-line of the 2011 Rugby World Cup. Vote Away. Don’t forget to leave your email address at the bottom and you could win a copy of the Rugby World Cup 2011 Video Game, either on Xbox or PS3.

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21 thoughts on “Pick Your RWC 2011 Team of the Tournament: The Backs

  1. 9. Weepu, 10. Carter, 11. North, 12. Nonu, 13. Roberts, 14. Jane, 15. Dagg/Beale (can’t make up my mind on that one).

  2. I’ve chosen two for each position. 1st choice / 2nd choice

    9. Phillips/Weepu
    10. Carter/Priestland
    11. Jane/Clerc
    12. Nonu/Roberts
    13. Ashley-Cooper/Tuilagi
    14. North/Kahui
    15. Dagg/Beale

  3. Can’t make up my mind in respect of Carter. Yes he played well against France in the pool game, but is everyone picking him, because he played well in this world cup or because probably everyone reckons he is the best fly half in the world – not sure. Certainly Contepomi and Priestland played great rugby and maybe deserve to edge it if you just take the RWC.

    Does Rougerie deserve a mention? Maybe he only played a blinder in the final (although when else should you play your best game of the tournament?).

    1. Have now seen the eye gouging incident and have decided that my choice of words for how Rougerie played was inadvertently appropriate. Hope he gets a long ban – no place for it in the game.

      1. Don’t think he will get a ban for it as the ABs didn’t complain about it to the citing commission with the allocated time (48 hours I think). Maybe they would have reported it if they had lost but I guess they wanted to focus on the win.

        1. That’s interesting – I thought that anyone could be cited and it didn’t matter if a team complained or not. I’d be pretty disappointed if nothing was done.

  4. Definitely Phillips at 9 – he may not be the best technically, but boy does he make things happen when Wales need him to. Weepu had an iffy semi and a dreadful final.

    Don’t think the tournament had an outstanding 10, but Priestland will do for me, though Contepomi deserves an honourable mention.

    Nonu and Roberts were the tournament’s best centres, though if I had to pick an actual 13, it would be Smith (with Nonu inside – just).

    Beale is some player, but Dagg was ridiculously good – no-brainer at 15.

    Clerc was, again, brillliant, and might just have been the man to sneak through and score a second French try had he stayed on in the final, so he’s a shoe-in; Jane on the other wing (thought Kahui was in the side for his defensive qualities more than anything else – didin’t look much of a threat with the ball in hand).

    Don’t think it’s fair to pick Carter at 10; yes, he’s the best 10 in the world by miles, but he didn’t play beyond the group stages and therefore shouldn’t be considered for a RWC XV.

    1. Agree with most of what you have said.

      Kahui is actually a centre by trade and only started playing wing for the tournament. He is a great player but there are better wingers including Ioane and Clerc. Guildford for NZ is actually a better out-and-out winger but Kahui gives you options for midfield cover.

      Mitigating factor for Weepu was that he had the flu in the semis (came off and spewed) and got a leg strain in the warm up before the final (they were working on him for a fair while before the game, at the park, and he looked in pain). I rate Phillips’ running game very highly though – he had a couple of moments of brilliance. Really liked the little Japanese halfback who started against France too. Zippy pass and dangerous around the rucks.

      Unfortunate to not see DC in the knock outs and agree that based on minutes played it would be hard to put him in the team.

  5. Please bear in mind this is a British blog, so the results are highly skewed in favor of Welsh players and against (because of current English angst and to be fair..bad performances) English ones.

    To pick the largely untested George North (who didn’t step up and score a try against Ireland, or France) over Cory Jane!(one of the players of the tournament, and incredible under the high ball), and Clerc (joint top scorer and scored an important try against England) North is still young so he has plenty of time to get better, but it’s the wrong shout.

    1. 15. Dagg
      14. Jane
      13. Roberts
      12. Nonu
      11. Kahui
      10. Parra
      09. Weepu

      Yes, I am as mad as Mad Marc. That’s how I see it.

      1. Not sure us English would skew things in favour of the Welsh, just because we played badly. I did however think they played well, so will grudgingly give them the respect they deserve. Having said that, I agree with your comments regarding North.

        Wouldn’t have picked Weepu or Kahui personally but think they were both good and it’s your choice of back division, but Parra – you are mad Marc. He wasn’t even the best French fly half in the final!

        1. To be fair he wasn’t let be as he got mugged by McCaw and the ref did nothing of course. You know why Parra was there. Because he has a huge long range kick that often delivers under pressure. Trinh-Duc is a more attacking, running player, a great player but might have fallen out with the wonky balls. Pity we didn’t see more of him as he put the fear of God into the AB’s when he came on. For short range kicks, you need someone like Yachvilli or Weepu if you stick Parra at 10. Weepu is better in that department generally as he has more in his game, if you go with the Mad Marc system that I quite like. They are both excellent players. Morne Steyns is another excellent player who should have been included above. Aside from kicking however, he is average. But his kicking is why he was the top points scorer at this WC. Here is another backline:

          15. Dagg
          14. Jane
          13. Rougerie
          12. Nonu
          11. Ioane
          10. Parra
          09. Weepu

          Actually, I like the look of this one better!

  6. Small rugby-playing populations:

    9. Kahn Fotuali’i (SAM)
    10. James Arlidge (JAP)
    11. Denis Simplikevich (RUS)
    12. Eliota Fuimaono Sapolu (SAM)
    13. Van Der Merwe (CAN)
    14. Vereniki Goneva (FIJI)
    15. Paul Williams (SAM)

    Big rugby-playing populations:

    9. Phillips
    10. Priestland
    11. Ioane
    12. Nonu
    13. Rougerie
    14. Jane
    15. Dagg

    1. Ashton was good too.
      I’d rank that position as follows:

      Clerc / Jane > Ashton > North

      I can’t decide between Clerc over Jane. If in doubt I’d always pick a French player over those filthy AB’s, except Cory Jane is a special player, who should have started every game for the AB’s. He has pace and agility but with extra power, and is unmatched under the high ball.

      1. Filthy? I think they would have showered by now…

        Jane has a fantastic fend too, best in the game at the moment I think. He uses the momentum from the defender in his fend and accelerates at the same time – it is like a little nitro boost.

      2. Didn’t give more than Clerc/North/Jane. Top try scorer yes, but against lesser nations and gave less to the tournament overall.

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