One To Fifteen: England flanker Sam Underhill names his Dream Team
6. JERRY COLLINS
Collins won 48 caps for the All Blacks having made his debut in 2001, scoring five tries during a career that saw him become one of the most feared back-row players on the pitch due to his sheer strength and physicality.
7. RICHIE MCCAW
A former captain of the All Blacks and generally recognised as one of the greatest all-time flankers, McCaw had the size and strength to be a punishing defender and the cool head and quick hands required to master the breakdown area. He became the first All Black to reach 100 Tests in 2011 and captain a century of tests in 2014. He won World Rugby Player of the Year a record three times (2006, 2009, and 2010).
8. LAWRENCE DALLAGLIO
Widely rated as one of the world’s best-ever back row forwards, he was a key member of England’s World Cup-winning squad in Australia in 2003 and the only player to play in every minute of the memorable campaign. Lawrence also featured on three British and Irish Lions tours and was inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame in 2016. At domestic level, Lawrence was a one-club man with Wasps, picking up five Aviva Premiership titles along the way, as well as three Anglo-Welsh Cups and two European Rugby Champions Cups in his 18-year career.
9. GARETH EDWARDS
Combining both pace and strength to devastating effect, add to that near-perfect kicking, passing and defensive games, as well as a keen eye for the try line, and you can see why Edwards invariably tops the polls in any vote for the greatest player of all time. Edwards played for his country on 53 occasions between 1967 and 1978, scoring 88 points. Edwards also captained his country 13 times. Wales’ domination of the Five Nations was complete during Edwards’s career, when he helped them to win the title seven times, with three Grand Slam seasons. In addition to his 53 Wales caps he made 10 appearances for the British & Irish Lions, featuring on the 1968, 1971 and 1974 tours.
10. JONNY WILKINSON
Jonny Wilkinson will forever be remembered as the man who kicked England to Rugby World Cup glory in Australia in 2003 – slotting a last-gasp drop goal in extra-time to edge out the hosts in a thrilling tournament finale. That moment is just one highlight of a record-breaking career that has seen Wilkinson rise to one of the sport’s all-time greats. He won 91 caps for England between 1998 and 2011, scoring over 1,100 points during that time. He spent 12 seasons with the Newcastle Falcons, where he won the Premiership in 1998, before moving to Toulon. During his five year spell at the French club he won the Champions Cup on two occasions and the Top14 title. Named both World Rugby Player of the Year and BBC Sports Personality of the Year in 2003.