RaboDirect PRO 12
Can you guess the only Irish representative on the Rabo 12 Dream Team?
Congratulations if you guessed Ulster luck Dan Tuohy, even though the lack of Irish internationals is made up for by the presence of five players from the Irish provinces.
Tuohy is joined on the Dream XV by Ulster teammate Ruan Pienaar as well as Leinster duo Isa Nacewa and Richardt Strauss and Munster prop forward BJ Botha.
It’s fitting that a third of the team comes from the Irish provinces as it reflects the current positions of Leinster, Munster and Ulster in the table and it should come as no surprise that the Irish contingent have been overlooked considered that they missed a large chunk of the competition during the Six Nations.
Indeed, imports dominate a large part of the final XV; with leading try scorer Tim Visser and Munster bound centre Casey Laulala also featuring.
A panel of 14 journalists from Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales were canvassed to select the team after 19 rounds of the tournament, with Munster winger Simon Zebo and impressive Leinster fly-half Ian Madigan extremely close to making the final cut.
It’s not a bad looking outfit overall, but teams like this always make for interesting bar stool debate and you can be sure not everyone will be united in agreement on every call.
Were runaway leaders Leinster unlucky not to have more than two representatives? Should third-placed Munster have had more than one? Were there any Connacht players unlucky not to get the nod?
Feel free to let us know what you think in the comment box below.
RaboDirect PRO12 Dream Team 2011/12: Isa Nacewa (Leinster), Tim Visser (Edinburgh), Casey Laulala (Cardiff Blues), Ashley Beck (Ospreys), Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues); Duncan Weir (Glasgow Warriors), Ruan Pienaar (Ulster); Jon Welsh (Glasgow Warriors), Richardt Strauss (Leinster), BJ Botha (Munster), Dan Tuohy (Ulster), Tom Ryder (Glasgow Warriors), Dave Denton (Edinburgh), Justin Tipuric (Ospreys), Ben Morgan (Scarlets)