Brodie Retallick These add-ons are astonishing!!
OPINION:A decade of dominance, ended with World Cup woe.
The All Blacks were again a force to be reckoned with over the past 10 years – the 2011 and 2015 World Cup triumphs attesting to that – before a 2019 slip in which they lost both their hold on the Webb Ellis Cup, as well as the No 1 world ranking for the first time since 2009.
All up, since 2010 there have been 124 players who have worn the black jersey. So just how many of the current crop make it intoStuff’sAll Blacks Team of the Decade?
(Selection criteria for past players is based on entire careers, not just the games they played in this decade.)
The contenders:Tony Woodcock, Neemia Tialata, John Afoa, Ben Franks, Wyatt Crockett, Owen Franks, Charlie Faumuina, Ben Afeaki, Jeff Toomaga-Allen, Joe Moody, Nepo Laulala, Ofa Tuungafasi, Kane Hames, Tim Perry, Atu Moli, Karl Tu’inukuafe, Angus Ta’avao, Tyrel Lomax.
The winners:Tony Woodcock (loosehead) and Owen Franks (tighthead).
They’re the two most-capped props in All Blacks history.
Woodcock (118 tests) will best be remembered for scoring the sole try of the 2011 World Cup final, from a lineout move dubbed the ‘teabag’. Aside from those exploits, his consistently strong set piece work and admirable skillset around the park gave the All Blacks a banker at loosehead.
Franks (108 tests) may have missed out on this year’s World Cup because the selectors were looking for more mobility, but he will still go down as perhaps New Zealand’s best-ever scrummager, bringing a rock-solid, powerful foundation to the tighthead side. And while Woodcock dotted down 10 times in the black jersey, Franks can claim he was so busy in the tight stuff as the reason he didn’t ever get over the line.
The contenders: Andrew Hore, Keven Mealamu, Corey Flynn, Hika Elliot, Aled de Malmanche, Dane Coles, Nathan Harris, James Parsons, Codie Taylor, Liam Coltman, Asafo Aumua.
The winner:Dane Coles.
Had a tough job following in the footsteps of the legend that is Mealamu, but brought a unique style of play which made him the best in the world, before being hindered by injury in recent years.
Dependable lineout thrower and physically abrasive around the fringes, Coles coupled it with passing skills and footwork that any decent back would be proud of.
The contenders: Ali Williams, Brad Thorn, Anthony Boric, Tom Donnelly, Sam Whitelock, Jarrad Hoeata, Brodie Retallick, Luke Romano, Jeremy Thrush, Dominic Bird, Patrick Tuipulotu, James Broadhurst, Scott Barrett, Jackson Hemopo.
The winners: Brodie Retallick and Brad Thorn.
Since bursting onto the international scene in 2012, Retallick has become not just the best lock in the country, and the world, but one of the best players on the globe, fullstop. His core roles are complemented by a huge engine which sees him hammer breakdowns and punish in the tackle, while he also roams in space, with deft hands to boo
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