United Rugby Championship Team of the Week: ‘The Bogeyman’ returns while Munster forwards hit high numbers

Forum » Rugby » United Rugby Championship Team of the Week: ‘The Bogeyman’ returns while Munster forwards hit high numbers

Apr 30, 2024, 01:35

The tightly-contested United Rugby Championship served up another brilliant weekend of action loaded with plenty of thrilling and dramatic games.

With Round 15 now in the bank, we put our minds together to select the best performers on show. Let us know your team in the comments section.

Team of the Week

15 Warrick Gelant (Stormers): The ‘Bogeyman’ looks back to the form that earned him a Rugby World Cup winner’s medal after a blockbuster showing, complete with a dummy that will haunt Leinster for the rest of the season. The full-back always looked to ignite something with ball in hand and thrived in the loose, open-play style game against the Dublin side. Gelant was magnificent and gets in ahead of Bull Willie le Roux and Benetton’s Jacob Umaga, both of whom were outstanding for their teams.

14 Werner Kok (Sharks): It rarely gets better than a hat-trick on a 50th appearance but it is a fair reward for the wing who always works incredibly hard in every facet, from kick chases to defence and attack. Kok is a coach’s dream and he was on fire for the Sharks. Elsewhere, Bulls speedster Canan Moodie and Glasgow Warrior Kyle Steyn were electric in their teams’ wins.

13 David Kriel (Bulls): It is incredible how one quality performance can unearth the sheer value of a player and that is what has happened with Kriel. The centre was outstanding with four try involvements (one try and three assists) in an electric performance that firmly puts him on the Springboks’ radar. His versatility and attacking nous make him a strong Test candidate. Elsewhere, Benetton’s superstar centre Tommaso Menoncello was brilliant again.

12 Stuart McCloskey (Ulster): The colossal centre needed to put in a big effort for his team and did just that as he troubled the defence all game long, setting up a try with one of his hard runs and making 11 tackles in a crucial shift. The Irishman just edged the selection over Stormer Damian Willemse by the finest of margins in what could have been a coin flip.

11 Kurt-Lee Arendse (Bulls): It is almost impossible to keep ‘the Butcher’ quiet at any level as the Springbok always seems to pop up in the right place at the right time. Defenders know they cannot give him half a yard but sometimes it is impossible to stop what feels inevitable as his brace of tries suggests. Arendse’s X-factor could be the difference for the Bulls as the regular season runs its course. Ulster’s Jacob Stockdale was also exceptional for his team.

10 Siya Masuku (Sharks): At this rate, the black jersey won’t be the only colour he wears this year. Masuku’s rise has been sensational as he has firmly grabbed his chances by dragging the Sharks out of their poor form with yet another man-of-the-match display. Two try assists and 12 points speak for themselves as the South African gets in ahead of Munster’s Jack Crowley.

9 John Cooney (Ulster): The wise veteran ultimately proved to be the difference between a win and a loss for Ulster. Cooney set up a try while kicking 13 points as his team stayed in the tight play-off race. There were other solid performances from Stormer Herschel Jantjies and Glasgow’s Jamie Dobie but Cooney’s interventions were central to the result.

Busy forwards

8 Lorenzo Cannone (Benetton): The Italian number eight did everything he could to get his team over the line but unfortunately for him, it was in vain. Despite the loss, his efforts cannot be questioned after he made 24 tackles and 12 carries, beating five players in the process, which easily earns him a spot over Shark Vincent Tshituka.

7 Alex Kendellen (Munster): The Munster back-row’s 24 tackles define the term work-rate as Kendellen not only provided a platform for his team to work with but also robbed the Lions of any chance to get going in Johannesburg. Important wins are built on big efforts and Kendellen deserves full recognition. Edinburgh’s Hamish Watson also had a strong shift.

6 Elrigh Louw (Bulls): Another rock solid outing from the back-row who looks more and more like a player about to make a serious charge in a starting Springboks role. Louw put his hand up to carry all game long while also making 13 tackles. His leadership was clear as he looked to inspire those around him. The flank gets in ahead of Benetton’s Alessandro Izekor and Edinburgh star Jamie Ritchie.

5 Tadhg Beirne (Munster): The way the second-row is playing we may as well put his name down first every week. Beirne was absolutely everywhere for Munster as he refused to give the Lions anything to work with while tackling like a man possessed for his 15 hits. Not even the crucial shift of Stormer Ruben van Heerden can challenge the Irishman’s effort.

4 Harry Sheridan (Ulster): Another player who was in the trenches digging deep for his team’s benefit as he notched up 18 tackles on the day. He was less effective with ball in hand but impressed on a whole. South African duo Salmaan Moerat (Stormers) and RG Snyman (Munster) were also influential.

3 Neethling Fouche (Stormers): Man of the match on the day and a player well on the Bokrometer. Fouche destroyed his opposite number in the scrum, giving the Stormers a platform to work with while making six tackles on the day. It was a polished hour or so on the park and he betters the efforts of Wilco Louw (Bulls) and Stephen Archer (Munster).

2 Ryan Elias (Scarlets): One of the most committed performances in the round with not only a try scored but a whopping 20 tackles made as the hooker defended with all his might in a losing cause. Elias beat four defenders in eight carries as he underlined his quality, getting selected ahead of Gregor Hiddleston (Glasgow Warriors), Johan Grobbelaar (Bulls) and Tom Stewart (Ulster).

1 Pierre Schoeman (Edinburgh): The Scot was justly rewarded with a try for his efforts as the chief ball carrier for his team. Schoeman notched up a game-high 15 carries whilst also still finding the time to make eight tackles in a performance that showcased the Test pedigree of the loosehead. 39-year-old Stormer Brok Harris was outstanding in his record-setting 150th game for the club.

Apr 30, 2024, 02:17

Neethling is really playing and scrumming well so he deserved the call up …Masuku is definitely a welcome site, as you always need quality depth at Flyhalf…..what a travesty, can you believe this nonsense, they did not pick Damian de Allendig at 12 :)

Apr 30, 2024, 02:51

Andre Esterhuizen

Sharks fans will be licking their lips at the prospect of Andre Esterhuizen thundering through defenders in the black jersey next season as he did at Twickenham against Northampton Saints. Harlequins were underdogs heading into the match against the Premiership league leaders but kept their play-off hopes alive with an impressive 41-32 victory with the centre playing a crucial role in the win.

Esterhuizen gained more metres in the match than any other player (93) while beating three defenders from his 15 carriers and made 10 passes. Damian de Allende will likely retain the first-choice starting number 12 jumper under Erasmus this year, but Esterhuizen is hammering on the door.

Apr 30, 2024, 02:55


Bokrometer: 15 standout performances including a Kriel worldie as battle for Springbok call-ups heat up

Apr 30, 2024, 12:43


Listen, bru..!

I don't appreciate you ignorant jokes about DDA. You would only makes such jokes if you were a "dumfuck". DDA ees va bestest 12 in va games, oright!?

Apr 30, 2024, 12:47

Jokes aside, what the hell is going on with Bok rugby? There is talent all over the place. I mean, when last did we have about 6-7 internaitonal quality wingers to choose from? 

9 - We actually have too many quality 9s. 

10 - This is our biggest problem position. 

12 - Is only a problem because of DDA. AE and Kriel could easily do a better job. And yes, Roos or Kwagga would also be better at 12 than Dumbian...easily.

13 - Am, Moodie, Henco, or even Kriel(not Jessica)

11/14 - Same as 9s, it's like we have too many.

Apr 30, 2024, 13:13

Shut up you ignorant prick

Apr 30, 2024, 13:32

Hiya wobbles...

Tell us how many facts you ignored today?

Apr 30, 2024, 14:30

Nice one plum :) DDA is unluckily going to still be here a while….he is doing quite well running over the Smaller Japanese guys, so off course he is world class and ready to kill more ball for the boks….Tassels should start sooner than later getting rid of all the exess weight….AJH said it the best, out with the old and in with the new.

Apr 30, 2024, 14:35

Would that be the fact that when DA, Esterhuizen, Willemse, Janse v Rensburg etc a fit that it’s always DA that gets selected at 12 for the Boks and plays 80 min virtually every game

Would that be the fact that when Eben, Lood and Mostert are fit, Eben and Lood start and powder puff gets relegated to the bench

Huh dumbfuck?

Apr 30, 2024, 20:19

Nice Saffa flavor...I'm sure DdA also made that team a lot while playing for Munster...not?

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