Team of the Week - Heineken Cup
December 13, 2010
Star performer: Toulon skipper Joe van Niekerk on the charge during his side's victory over London Irish © Getty Images
Sireli Bobo James Coughlan Florian Fritz Dylan Hartley Yannick Jauzion Ryan Jones Julien Malzieu Nicolas Mas Sean O'Brien Jerome Porical Tito Tebaldi Soane Tonga'uiha Joe van Niekerk Jonny Wilkinson
The battle for the Heineken Cup crown is starting to simmer nicely following the third round of pool action - but which players did enough to earn a place in our latest Team of the Week?
15. Jerome Porical (Perpignan) - An eye-catching display from the fullback produced a try, four penalties and a conversion that not only helped his side see off Leicester but also got Perpignan's season back on track.
14. Sireli Bobo (Racing Metro) - Produced a moment of magic to split the Saracens defence before powering away for a try at Vicarage Road. Sarries boss Brendan Venter led the plaudits with, "Three cheers for Sireli Bobo".
13. Florian Fritz (Toulouse) - The lively Fritz scored one try and created another as the defending champions made it three wins from thee in this season's competition.
12. Yannick Jauzion (Toulouse) - The giant Toulouse centre got amongst the tries as his side laid down another impressive marker in victory over Glasgow.
11. Julien Malzieu (Clermont Auvergne) - The French speedster dished out more misery to Leinster with yet another try against the Irish province to help propel Les Jaunards to their latest euro success.
10. Jonny Wilkinson (Toulon) - The England veteran offered a reminder of his class against London Irish with an accomplished all round display.
9. Tito Tebaldi (Aironi) - The Azzurri international steered his side to an historic victory over Biarritz at the Stadio Luigi Zaffanella with a priceless 10-point haul.
1. Soane Tonga'uiha (Northampton) - The Premiership's star performer so far this season had little trouble in transferring that form to the Heineken Cup stage.
2. Dylan Hartley (Northampton) - The Saints skipper led from the front as part of a dominant pack and not even a late yellow card could sour his performance.
3. Nicolas Mas (Perpignan) - The Catalans' tight-head used all his experience to help unsettle the Tigers' pack at the Stade Aime Giral and in doing so help earn a much-needed victory for his side.
4. Ryan Jones (Ospreys) - The Welsh international was hungry for work throughout his side's loss to Munster at Thomond Park and his dynamism points to a more regular home in the second row.
5. Donncha O'Callaghan (Munster) - Switched from the No.4 shirt he wore in Munster's victory over the Ospreys, his sterling efforts in defence were key to shackling their Welsh opponents.
6. Sean O'Brien (Leinster) - The Leinster flanker fronted up in a physical encounter against Clermont Auvergne at the Stade Marcel Michelin to help his side secure what could be a priceless bonus point.
7. James Coughlan (Munster) - Although he packed down at blindside in Munster's victory over the Ospreys, his outstanding display in a bruising game at Thomond Park demands his selection.
8. Joe van Niekerk (Toulon) - The Toulon talisman delivered a typical high-energy display to help see off the Exiles with his industry in defence and attack rewarded with the man of the match honour.
Did we get our selection right? Let us know your thoughts!
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Proposals to remove promotion and relegation from the Aviva Premiership would be for the good of the game overall, argues John Taylor
Ireland have the world sitting up and taking notice - and rugby's structure in Europe will aid their Rugby World Cup bid, writes John Mitchell
Where does Italy's win over Scotland rank among their successes in the Six Nations? Scrum Sevens investigates
The tone was set early on in Dublin as a more clinical Ireland made England pay. All is not lost, however, argues Phil Vickery