New Zealand Media Ranks The Top 10 Performers Of 2016
Popular New Zealand media outlet Stuff.co.nz have compiled a list of the top 10 performers of 2016.
The lists sees five players from each hemisphere make the cut, with only two team from each represented. Following on from their late resurgence in 2016, Ireland have two player’s on the list, Munster’s Conor Murray and World Rugby Player of the Year nominee, Jamie Heaslip.
Eddie Jones’s England have three player’s on the list after an unbeaten 2016, with Billy Vunipola, Owen Farrell and Maro Itjoe all making the cut. The Saracens trio enjoyed a magnificent year, all being nominated for World Rugby Player of the Year, lifting the Premiership, Champions Cup and Six Nations titles in 2016.
World Champions New Zealand dominate the Kiwi list with four representatives. Beauden Barrett tops the list, with Dane Coles joining him in the top 5. Fullback Ben Smith and lock Brodie Retallick also make the top 10.
Michael Cheika’s Wallabies have one representative on the list in the form of mercurial fullback Israel Folau.
Top 10 Performers of 2016
10 BILLY VUNIPOLA (ENGLAND)
9 BRODIE RETALLICK (NEW ZEALAND)
8 CONOR MURRAY (IRELAND)
7 OWEN FARRELL (ENGLAND)
6 BEN SMITH (NEW ZEALAND)
5 ISRAEL FOLAU (AUSTRALIA)
4 JAMIE HEASLIP (IRELAND)
3 DANE COLES (NEW ZEALAND)
2 MARO ITOJE (ENGLAND)
1 BEAUDEN BARRETT (NEW ZEALAND)
What do you think of this selection? Would you change the order or make any changes?