Lomu and Wilkinson make Johnson’s all-time XV, but other stars misses out

Who are the greatest rugby players to have played the game? After much deliberation, England legend Martin Johnson has selected his XV for The Times.
Fullback: Serge Blanco, France

“A great France full back who dominated games.”


Wing: Joe Roff, Australia

“You’d put David Campese up there but Roff is my choice. A fantastic all-round rugby player, and old-style wing.”


Centre: Philippe Sella, France

“I used to watch him as a kid on TV and think he was brilliant; and then ten years later I played against him and he was still brilliant. He still looks as if he could play for France today. One of the best backs I’ve ever seen. If you hit him it was like running into concrete.”


Centre: Danie Gerber, South Africa

“Scored a hat-trick against England in the first half in one match in the 1980s. He didn’t play many Tests because of apartheid, but he had power and pace. I don’t know if he could pass: it seemed like he never needed to. I played against him in a charity match in 1996 when he must have been well into his 40s, he was still awesome.”


Wing: Jonah Lomu, New Zealand

“Not much difficulty in choosing one of the most awesome wings to have ever played.”

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