RUCK’s Team of the Week: Owen Farrell, Harry Mallinder, Kieran Read

 Now that the dust has settled after the final round of the June internationals, as well as the World Under 20 Championship final, we select the players that stood out over the weekend.

Fullback: ISRAEL DAGG (New Zealand)
The All Black was in superb form with ball in hand in his side’s demolition of Wales, gaining an incredible 252 metres on attack which is more than the combined efforts of his opponents’ entire team.

Wing: BEN SMITH (New Zealand)
Seems to thrive no matter where he is on the field. He not only scored a try for his team but made three clean breaks and beat five defenders while also producing some excellent passes and offloads.

Centre: JOE MARCHANT (England U20)

Centre: OWEN FARRELL (England)
For all the free-flowing rugby, it was Farrell’s boot that kept England’s noses in front time and time again. He has had an astonishingly good series. The Saracens man is now as reliable and inspiring as his hero Jonny Wilkinson.

Wing: JP PIETERSEN (South Africa)

Fly-half: HARRY MALLINDER (England U20)
A stand-out player during the tournament, Mallinder has played both fly-half and inside centre for England and has pulled the strings to help his side to the title. Mallinder scored 65 points in total, testifying of his all-round ability as a versatile back.

Scrum-half: FAF DE KLERK (South Africa)
The Springbok number nine was instrumental for the Boks in the third Test when they managed to clinch the three-match Test series 2-1 after losing the opening match in Cape Town. Known for his sniping around the fringes it was the Lions scrum-half’s defensive prowess that single handedly won the final Test for South Africa.

Prop: MAKO VUNIPOLA (England)
Solid in tight, marauding in loose. Gets better and better. Probably one of the player of the series. Edges out Wallabies counterpart James Slipper.

Hooker: DANE COLES (New Zealand)
Got better as game went on, and notched his sixth test try with a nice finish off Cane’s smart offload.

Prop: DAN COLE (England)
Hit a great line to receive a delightful offload from Ben Youngs to score a deserved try, a reward for his scrummaging work this series. The Leicester man firmly buried memory of England’s under-performing World Cup scrum.

Lock:  BRODIE RETALLICK (New Zealand)
Outstanding display from best forward on the park. Mades tackles, hit rucks, carried hard and cleaned rucks. An aggressive physical force. 

Lock: YOANN MAESTRI (France)
Captained les Bleus to that noteworthy 27-0 takedown of Argentina in Tucumán, with the Toulouse enforcer leading France’s tackle count on 14.

Flanker: CJ Stander
The South African-born flanker went all out to make up for lost time following his red card in the opening Test. And he more than proved himself, after an incredible performance despite his team’s loss.

Flanker: WILL EVANS (England U20)


Number 8: KIERAN READ (New Zealand)
Another standout display from the skipper. Not as prominent with ball in this one, but did everything with commitment and efficiency. On top of his game.

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