Rugby World Cup 2019 team of the quarter-finals

RUCK picks our stand-out performers from the weekend’s matches, in which England, New Zealand, South Africa and Wales secured victories to reach the semi-finals…

Rugby World Cup 2019 team of the quarter-finals

Fullback | Beauden Barrett (New Zealand) – He was awarded the man of the match against Ireland. A glorious skill-set – he showcased it to telling effect; a brilliant footballer no matter where he plays.

Winger | Jonny May (England) – Touched the ball three times in the first half and finished with two tries. Rolled up his sleeves in the second half but injured late on.

Centre | Virimi Vakatawa (France) – Stepped in midfield to set the platform for fast French start and then added a try for good measure. How did he not make his team’s initial wider World Cup training squad this summer?

Centre |Anton Lienert-Brown (New Zealand) –Some masterful link-play and dummy runs in midfield as the rest of the backs around him stole the headlines. Selection ahead of Ryan Crotty, Sonny Bill Williams underlined his class.

Winger | Makazole Mapimpi (South Africa) –A very busy man out wide racking up 116 running metres during the 80 metres. He scored two excellent tries and marked Japan’s dangermen well out wide.

Fly-half | Dan Biggar (Wales) – Excellent game management in the heat of battle and under the most intense pressure. Kicked superbly from the tee.

Scrum-half | Aaron Smith (New Zealand) –Stole two tries from heads-up plays close to the line and organised his pack superbly. Completely outplayed Conor Murray. Stuff’s man of the match

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