Three Super Rugby XVs picked with one player from each franchise since 1996

Three Super Rugby XVs picked with one player from each franchise since 1996

For the last 25 years, Super Rugby has thrilled the rugby public and entertained many rugby spectators around the world.

We pay tribute to the Southern Hemisphere's premier competition with three of our writers picking a starting XV featuring just one player from a particular franchise since the competitions' inspection in 1996.

Let's get to the teams and let us know who you think pieced the best side together at the end. 


Jolyon - Benn Robinson, Waratahs: A mobile loosehead with a surprising turn of space. Very useful at set-piece and at the breakdown as well.

Shaun - Tendai Mtawarira, Sharks: One of my favorite player and has earned his place here with some great performances over the years

Jared - Tendai Mtawarira, Sharks: While others left, Mtawarira stayed and become a legend of Sharks and South African rugby.


Jolyon - Bismarck du Plessis, Sharks: Arguably the best hooker in the world during his prime. Tough, fit and brilliant in all facets of forward play.

Shaun - Agustin Creevy, Jaguares: Great leader and performer, plays with his heart on his sleeve

Jared - Agustin Creevy, Jaguares: One of the competitions greatest hookers. Excellent in all facets of the game and true leader of men.


Jolyon - Frans Malherbe, Stormers: I know Frans looks like a guy they found in a bar on the Platteland and handed a pair of boots to but he is a solid anchor of any scrum he plays in. 

Shaun - Robbi Kempson, Stormers: Ahead of his time. A prop with an incredible technique with a work rate to match.

Jared - Carl Hayman, Highlanders: Just the name should suffice but Hayman was one of the all time greats in the position.

No.4 Lock

Jolyn - Matt Philip, Rebels: Tall, physical and especially useful at lineout time.

Shaun - Brad Thorn, Highlanders: I was happy to sneak him in and let's be honest, who wouldn't want someone like this in their side

Jared - Bakkies Botha, Bulls: Brutal yet effective. A classic build of a no.4 lock, he could do it all and some.

No.5 Lock

Jolyon - Tomas Lavanini, Jaguares: An experienced, physical lock who brings mobility and aggression to any pack.

Shaun - Victor Matfield, Bulls: One of the best locks we have seen in our time.

Jared - John Eales, Reds: An all-time great, the man to lead my side and a hard one to omit.

Blindside Flanker

Jolyon - David Pocock, Brumbies: A master at the breakdown, opponents always have to be on their toes at ruck time to stop Pocock claiming their possession.
Shaun - Richie McCaw, Crusaders: Legend.
Jared - Schalk Burger, Stormers: Hit hard on defence and could do it all from throwing skip passes to making turnovers.

Openside Flanker

Jolyon - Richie McCaw, Crusaders: Arguably the greatest flanker in history and most capped player of all time. A shoo-in for any side.

Shaun - George Smith, Reds: Can't have one legend without the other

Jared - Richie McCaw, Crusaders: Never took a step back and never seemed to have a bad game. He lived on the edge and is one of the greatest of all time.


Jolyon - Duane Vermeulen, Bulls: Strong, tough, robust and displaying an impressive set of all-round skills.

Shaun - David Pocock, Western Force: Strong, tough, robust and displaying an impressive set of all-round skills.

Jared - Michael Leitch, Sunwolves: Another outstanding leader that gives everything for his team.


Jolyon - Faf de Klerk, Lions: A World Cup-winning scrumhalf, de Klerk, with his livewire attitude a quick service has proved himself to be up there with the best.

Shaun -  Will Genia, Rebels: Brilliant player with little errors
Jared - Will Genia - Rebels: Easily one of the top 5 halfback in the competition's history and was superbly effective and consistent.

Jolyon - Carlos Spencer, Blues: One of the most inventive, attacking number 10s to have ever played the game, there seemed to be no end to his innovation on the field.

Shaun - Stephen Donald, Chiefs: Underrated but dangerous.
Jared - Carlos Spencer, Blues: He earned the nickname "King Carlos". Oustanding playmaker and unbeatable on his day.
Jolyon - Sitiveni Sivivatu, Chiefs: Big, strong, pacey and a proven try-scoring machine.
Shaun - Ruan Combrinck, Lions: A beast with ball in hand and pace to burn
Jared - Christian Cullen - Hurricanes: An electrifying runner. A fullback by trade but forms a sensational back three.
Inside Centre
Jolyon - Tim Horan, Reds: A magnificently skilful centre who consistently ignited wonderful attacking displays in any backline he was a part of.
Shaun - Ma'a Nonu, Blues: The player who I feel evolved his game the most in the modern era, pure class
Jared - Kurtley Beale, Waratahs: One of Australia's best talents. He can do it all at 10, 12 and 15. 
Outside Centre
Jolyon - Malakai Fekitoa, Highlanders: A solid outside centre, completely at home and brilliant on both attack and defence.
Shaun - Matt Giteau, Brumbies: Incredible vision and skills to pull it off, Giteau and Nonu can easily shift positions to change point of attack
Jared - Jacque Fourie, Lions: A defensive mastermind and equally as good on attack. 
Right Wing
Jolyon - Gerhard van den Heever, Sunwolves: A strong and speedy winger with an eye for the try line.
Shaun - Adam Ashley-Cooper, Waratahs: Another underrated player in my opinion who is able to fill in where required
Jared - Joe Roff, Brumbies: A gifted runner, could break a game open, defend well and an absolute Brumbies and Wallabies legend.
Jolyon - Christian Cullen, Hurricanes: Arguably the best-attacking fullback to have played the game, Cullen’s every touch of the ball commanded respect from and signalled panic in every defensive system. 
Shaun - Christian Cullen, Hurricanes: Pure class at the back that will bring the backs together and cause havoc just on his own if the opportunity arises
Jared - Damian McKenzie, Chiefs: Worth the gate fee alone. It was going to take something special to push Cullen to the wing and McKenzie is exactly that.

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