New Zealand's Greatest Ever XV

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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:33 am

With the All Blacks latest record, we have seen any number of articles written from which English players would make the current AB team (not many was the answer) to one I saw today which was what is the greatest ever AB XV. Done by Mick Cleary for the Telegraph he has come up with the following list (I assume he only included players he had seen, which makes sense):

15 Fergie McCormick (65-71)
14 John Kirwan (84-94)
13 Conrad Smith (04-15)
12 Ma'a Nonu (03-15)
11 Jonah Lomu (94-02)
10 Dan Carter (03-15)
9 Sid Going (67-77)
1 tony Woodcock (02-15)
2 Sean Fitzpatrick (86-97)
3 Olo Brown (92-98)
4 Colin Meads (57-71)
5 Brodie Retallick (12- )
6 Michael Jones (87-98)
7 Richie McCaw (01-15)
8 Buck Shelford (86-90)



Full Article: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union/2016/10/25/the-ultimate-all-time-all-blacks-xv-how-many-of-the-current-crop/


Thoughts?

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Post by BamBam on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:40 am

1st thought for me is Christian Cullen, but then I've never even heard of the full back he's picked

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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:41 am

BamBam wrote:1st thought for me is Christian Cullen, but then I've never even heard of the full back he's picked
Embarrassed to admit, neither had I.

With anything liek this I woudl always break it into two groups - pre/post August 95, as professionalism has changed the game ever so much.

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Post by propdavid_london on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:46 am

Cullen left out, Mils Mulialina!
Kieran Reed
C.Hayman
Rokkocoko


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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:55 am

Cullen certainly for me.
Reid one day, but for now Buck or Zinzan.
Dane Coles maybe one day too!

Hayman probably struggles due to short AB career, Franks could be in the running.

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Post by Poorfour on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:56 am

What really stands out is the longevity, with that squad averaging 9 seasons of international rugby apiece.
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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:58 am

Five players who retired last season. Shows just how good the rebuilding phase is going that they keep winning.

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Post by Taylorman on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 10:20 am

Pretty good, Cullen for Fergie who did have a good spell in the Lochore / Allen era. Modern fitness and speed versus the older range of player probably puts players like Aaron Smith in front of Going but I like the look of it...some real nostalgia mixed with some of today's greats but everyone of them a very dedicated and long serving All Black.

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Post by propdavid_london on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 12:22 pm

If you want longevity then Kevin Mealamu has to be right up there.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 1:53 pm

No Zinzan Brooke??

I may be biased but Hayman for me at TH. Ive never seen a prop like him before or since he played for us. A one man wrecking machine.

No Tuigamala?
No Jeff Wilson?
No Cullen?
No Umaga?

Interesting....

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Post by aucklandlaurie on Wed 26 Oct 2016, 2:26 pm


If it was I, I would probably put Bruce Robinson ahead of Conrad Smith, smoother, faster runner who could catch a ball with his ear.

Probably would also go for Bryan Williams over John Kirwan, better side step and could kick goals.

And Tana over Nonu.

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Post by fa0019 on Thu 27 Oct 2016, 2:47 pm

Olo Brown. please.

Good scrummager... until he faced the boks.  Hayman was superior in that he was the best in his position throughout his test career. Can't say that about Brown.

Prior to the mid 80s I don't know but there are better since.

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Post by emack2 on Thu 27 Oct 2016, 3:02 pm

Like all these teams they are only valid in there eras as an example Props
"Snow" White,Johnnie Simpson,Kevin Skinner,Ken Gray,Ian Clarke,Steve
McDowell,Richard Loe.
Full Backs Bob Scott,Don Clarke etc etc.that would be same for the Boks,loosies
how can you not include Nathan,Graham,Tremain?!!

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Post by fa0019 on Thu 27 Oct 2016, 3:06 pm

I don't think Loe was one of the best technical props out there but what he simply put fear in other guys hearts and reputations like that are priceless on the rugby field. He'd be right up there in terms of the best from the last 30 years.

Other guys who sort of fit that bill were Kobus Weise, Martin Johnson, Gareth Chilcott, Gareth Thomas, Brian Lima. Its not necessarily thuggery, just tough SOBs.

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Post by majesticimperialman on Thu 27 Oct 2016, 4:00 pm

Justin Marshall at 9 for me. Surely Andrew Merthens should be there pushing Dan Carter for the 10 shirt.

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Post by aucklandlaurie on Thu 27 Oct 2016, 4:18 pm

Marshall's delivery from the ground was too slow, and would you really rate Merthens over the brilliant rugby mind of Grant Fox.

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Post by Shifty on Fri 28 Oct 2016, 6:21 pm

BamBam wrote:1st thought for me is Christian Cullen, but then I've never even heard of the full back he's picked
My first thought as well, Cullen was an awesome player.
I would of had a hissy fit if Kirwan hadn't made it, best 14 in the world during his era.
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Post by aucklandlaurie on Sat 29 Oct 2016, 7:46 am

Shifty wrote:
BamBam wrote:1st thought for me is Christian Cullen, but then I've never even heard of the full back he's picked
My first thought as well, Cullen was an awesome player.
I would of had a hissy fit if Kirwan hadn't made it, best 14 in the world during his era.

I just presumed ever included all eras.

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Post by Shifty on Sat 29 Oct 2016, 8:05 pm

aucklandlaurie wrote:
Shifty wrote:
BamBam wrote:1st thought for me is Christian Cullen, but then I've never even heard of the full back he's picked
My first thought as well, Cullen was an awesome player.
I would of had a hissy fit if Kirwan hadn't made it, best 14 in the world during his era.

I just presumed ever included all eras.

For New Zealand yes, but if you included every player ever, from every country, then Kirwan might have serious competition.
In an all time team I'd go for Campese and Lomu myself.
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Post by aucklandlaurie on Sat 29 Oct 2016, 8:30 pm


Jonah and Campo were left wings.

J.K. right.

Campo had the best ever response to the Haka.

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Post by maestegmafia on Sun 30 Oct 2016, 10:30 am

BamBam wrote:1st thought for me is Christian Cullen, but then I've never even heard of the full back he's picked

Cullen over McCormick

McCormicks career finished in 1971 when Barry John made him look like an absolute fool

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Post by George Carlin on Sun 30 Oct 2016, 10:43 am

Seems absolutely mad not to have any of Cullen, Wilson or Howlett in there.
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Post by aucklandlaurie on Sun 30 Oct 2016, 10:59 am

maestegmafia wrote:
BamBam wrote:1st thought for me is Christian Cullen, but then I've never even heard of the full back he's picked

Cullen over McCormick

McCormicks career finished in 1971 when Barry John made him look like an absolute fool

Actually common opinion down here in New Zealand is that our greatest full back is neither Fergie McCormack or Christian Cullen, but Don Clark, he was the All Black fullback for 8 years and his record number of points for new Zealand was not bettered until Grant Fox came along.

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Post by George Carlin on Sun 30 Oct 2016, 7:23 pm

Laurie - speaking of legends, how do people rate Nepia?
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Post by Not grey and not a ghost on Sun 30 Oct 2016, 8:37 pm

George Carlin wrote:Laurie - speaking of legends, how do people rate Nepia?

I still rate him as the best. It's hard. He's from a different era. One which no one now remembers. He was arguably the greatest interwar union or league fullback. As a union player in the 20's his role was largely defensive. Maurice Brownlee probably should be in there as well (the Colin Meads of the 20's).

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