Here's how RUCK's Lions starting XV looks right now - Ruck

Here’s how RUCK’s Lions starting XV looks right now

There’s just one round of matches remaining in the Six Nations, meaning time is running out for Warren Gatland to make decisions about who will be on the plane to New Zealand this summer.

So here’s RUCK’s best crack currently at a British and Irish rugby team to beat the All Blacks in this summer’s three-Test series.


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Fullback: STUART HOGG (Scotland)
The Scot is an outstanding counter-attacker and hard as nails going under the high ball.
Wing: JACK NOWELL (England)
Nowell rarely puts a foot wrong, reads the game well, looks for work, has the power to truck the ball over the gain-line and is solid in defence and under the high ball.
Centre: JONATHAN JOSEPH (England)
The outside centre just can’t stop scoring tries at international level with 16 in 32 appearances and has a staggering 82.81% win rate with England.
Centre: OWEN FARRELL (England)
His experience in the pivot position equips him to serve as a second playmaker. He’s also the best goalkicker in world rugby.
Wing: GEORGE NORTH (Wales)
North has been plagued by head injuries but if he can stay fit and play like he did against Ireland he must be in the team.
Fly-half: JOHNNY SEXTON (Ireland) 
Sexton was Lions orchestrator in Australia four years ago and the number 10 remains a stand-out figure for Ireland.
Scrum-half: CONOR MURRAY (Ireland)
A Munster monster man who many rate the world’s best halfback in 2016. Built like a backrower, a dangerous runner around the edges and a master of the box kicking art.
Prop: MAKO VUNIPOLA (England)
Billy’s Wellington-born big brother is 130kg and a powerful scrummager, but is handy around the field too. Eddie Jones reckons Vunipola’s skill set is better than the All Blacks’ tight forwards.
Hooker: DYLAN HARTLEY (England)
He’s added extra maturity to his game and has thrived as England’s captain. Edges out Ireland’s able Rory Best and Wales’ Ken Owens
Prop: TADHG FURLONG (Ireland)
Furlong’s rise has been astronomic but he’s without doubt ready for such a challenge. He bullied the All Blacks in Chicago. 
Lock: MARO ITOJE (England)
Does this outstanding athlete and work-horse ever have a below-par game?
Lock: JONNY GRAY (Scotland)
Gray edges into the XV for his all-round ability. Could have easily gone for Kruis, Launchbury or Wyn Jones.
Flanker: CJ STANDER (Ireland)
Stander might be a natural eight but he has been outstanding for Ireland at blindside and it seems to be the most logical way of getting him into the Lions XV.
Flanker: JUSTIN TIPURIC (Wales)
Tipuric has been in inspired form for Wales and the Ospreys and he should be selected ahead of compatriot Sam Warburton.
Number 8: BILLY VUNIPOLA (England)
You have to be good to keep Jamie Heaslip and Taulape Faletau out of the starting lineup, and Vunipola certainly is. Eddie Jones believes the Brisbane-born, 126kg Vunipola can be the best No 8 in the world.

 

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