The weekend’s Super Rugby action produced some outstanding performances from some of the game’s stelwarts as well as some newcomers. We’ve picked the top 5 performers for Round 7 of Super Rugby 2016:
Rieko Ioane (Blues)
It’s scary to think, given he’s played only three Super Rugby games, how good the younger Ioane brother could become. The 19-year-old winger produced a performance brimming with pace and professionalism in his side’s narrow defeat to the Chiefs. He beat six defenders in the match and his try gave the Blues a 10-point lead they would squander.
Liam Gill (Reds)
The Reds have been terribly underwhelming so far this season, but the Queensland side finally showed snippets of their 2011 championship winning team. Liam Gill was one of the standout players, scoring a great try on the wing and acting as an absolute nuisance at the breakdown. He has also developed his skills to link with the backline, making him a pivotal cog in the Reds’ attacking machine.
Jean-Luc du Plessis (Stormers)
The Stormers’ flyhalf debacle left many questions in the air, but stand-in playmaker Jean-Luc du Plessis answered all of them. Du Plessis slotted excellently into the Stormers’ star-studded backline and added some extra width that has been missing in recent weeks. He scored a breathtaking try himself which showcased his own attacking prowess.
Dane Coles (Hurricanes)
Two clean breaks, three defenders beaten and even an offload – few hookers are capable of the type of athletic efforts Coles produced in the Hurricanes’ thumping of the Jaguares. The hooker exemplified the Hurricanes’ improving fluidity with ball inhand, carrying well throughout the match and crossing for his side’s fourth try midway through the second spell.
Elton Jantjies (Lions)
The Lions had a strong performance against the Sharks in Durban, and a lot of credit can go to flyhalf Elton Jantjies, who was supreme in his control of the game. He has never looked more composed and assured, and he is easily the best South African flyhalf in this year’s competition. The battle against the Stormers next week will be an interesting tell.
Who do you think performed well this weekend? Let us know in the comment below and tweet us at @MenStuffZA…