The magnificent seven
May 2, 2012
It has been Chris Robshaw's season © Getty Images
ESPNscrum's XV of the Season
With the Aviva Premiership building to a dramatic climax, this week's Scrum Sevens hands out some awards to those who have shone this season - and others who have not quite covered themselves in glory.
Player of the Season
Whether Quins will end the campaign with the silverware remains to be seen but Robshaw has been a colossus for them on and off the field. Captaining England aside, his club form has been constantly impressive and he was a key part of their 14-game unbeaten run at the start of the campaign.
Director of Rugby of the Season
But like last season, the award goes to Exeter's Rob Baxter. It has been another remarkable campaign for the Devon side with Baxter's charges laughing in the face of those who suggested last summer that they would suffer the dreaded 'difficult second season'. Far from it, they've got better. A spot in next season's Heineken Cup is secure and although the odds are stacked against them, the fact that they are still in contention for a play-off spot is testament to Baxter's hard work.
Young Player of the Season
Showing maturity beyond his tender years, Farrell looks set for a bright future for both club and country. Harking back to the start of the season, he kicked the last-minute penalty to down Bath while also turning in a hugely impressive showing against Leicester as Sarries ran out 50-25 victors. In the ensuing months Farrell has played in five Six Nations matches, tamed the cauldron that is the Stade de France and could potentially lift his second Premiership title in as many seasons - not bad for someone who is still only 20.
Try of the Season
Jonny May's stunning solo effort against Harlequins
Ross Chisholm scores an incredible try of his own
Game of the Season
Harlequins' epic match against Leicester
Moment of the Season
The tournament's culmination meant that the struggling Tigers would soon have their full array of international stars back at Welford Road. Unsurprisingly, they soon rediscovered their bite and they have been in incredible form ever since. Toby Flood, Manu Tuilagi, Martin Castrogiovanni and Marcos Ayerza scored tries to lead them to a key win over Sale as the Tigers began their renaissance, leaving them with a great chance of lifting the Premiership title come May 26.
Villain of the Season
But, bless him; we have to give the gong to Sam Vesty. The versatile Bath back has been solid all season for the West Country side and he showed his delight at crossing the line for what he thought was going to be their fourth try against Wasps a fortnight ago. But Wasps' Tom Varndell scampered back and made a try-saving tackle to embarrass Vesty and ensure his side escaped with what could be an all-important losing bonus point. It's harsh on Vesty as we are yet to see how big the ramifications are, but it was a monumental cock up and for that, he gets the nod.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"Like the Treaty of Versailles, despite all the promises, the new Participation Agreement is certainly not the final solution." John Taylor writes
"We know where we are going and we know where we want to get but how long that will take is anybody's guess." David Humphreys on his plans for Gloucester
Jim Mallinder and Justin Burnell were sat on the same top table, but in different circumstances. Tom Hamilton reports on the Aviva Premiership season launch
Tom Hamilton reports back from the launch of the Guinness PRO12 where there is a renewed sense of optimism with all of the off-field changes to the league