Rugby history top 10: The greatest centres of all time as O'Driscoll and Sella fight for top spot

Rugby history top 10: The greatest centres of all time as O’Driscoll and Sella fight for top spot

As we continue our Top 10 sequence of investigations into the all-time best rugby player’s we are this time concentrating our sights on the centres, who wear the 12&13 shirts.

The centres are crucial to the to any rugby side in both attack and defence and are the players that in an instance can create a chance out of nowhere as they try to break the line.

Following much thought, here is our top ten of all time at


10 Tana Umaga

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Despite starting out as a winger, Tana Umaga developed into at one point the best centre in the world. The former All Black Skipper won 74 caps for his country between 1997 and 2005, scoring 36 tries. With his trademark dreadlocks, he was named Captain in 2004.

He then went on to lead the All Blacks to a Tri-nations victory and an end of year Grand Slam tour of Europe, making a surprise retirement after the last international against Scotland.

Did you know: In the 2006 Queen’s Birthday Honours Umaga was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit in recognition of his dedicated service to rugby.

9 Danie Gerber

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He is the greatest centre ever to play for the Springboks; Danie Gerber had a career that was overshadowed by his unfortunate Isolation in South Africa, a by-product of Apartheid. The strong and aggressive centre had a rare mix of speed, size and agility but was also a rock-solid presence in defence.

His international career spanned twelve years between 1980 and 1992 with him making 24 appearances for the Springboks’, scoring 82 points. His final test came in England at Twickenham in 1992 with him finally being able to display his immense talents on English soil.

Did you know: In 2007 he was inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame.