Craig Hampson, Ealing Trailfinders and former Yorkshire Carnegie, Bristol Bears and Wasps scrum-half picks a dream XV based on the best he has played with or against.
1. Ellis Genge
Brilliant teammate at Bristol who always had your back and looked after me a fair few times in some training bust ups! Great to see him doing well with England.
2. Tommy Taylor
You don’t get many hookers that look like him! Unbelievable around the pitch and to think he went three seasons without a missed tackle – incredible.
3. Tadhg Furlong
Wasps played Leinster in Europe, we got absolutely pumped and it all started from their set-piece. This guy can play too, mind – brilliant around the park.
4. Joe Tekori
Brilliant for Toulouse and I’ve never seen a man so big! Always needs a two-man tackle and a great off-loader in true Pacific Island style.
5. Maro Itoje
I’ve never felt more uncomfortable as a scrum-half box-kicking with this wrecking machine piling through the ruck at pace and trying to charge you down.
6. Sam Jones
The best tackler you will see, such a shame he never got to show it at the highest level. Every tackle seemed to be a huge shot.
7. George Smith
True legend of the game who came to Wasps and Bristol and was so clever in the way he played. Mad skillset and a great leader. Loves a beer too!
8. Nathan Hughes
The big lad always gets you out of trouble from the base and rarely fails to get over the gain-line. As a No.9 myself, he’s a great man to have in your side.
9. Antoine Dupont
One of the golden boys of the French revolution, sharp on both sides of the ruck and a great kicking game. This guy’s got a huge future.
10. Danny Cipriani
Brilliant rugby brain whose understanding of the game is second to none. Runs the attack with ridiculously high standards.
11. Elliot Daly
The most competitive man you will meet, whether it’s conditioning games on a Monday or a full match on a Saturday, he is always playing to win.
12. Kurtley Beale
Rolls Royce of a player with ridiculous natural flair and confidence on the ball who makes everyone around him raise their game.
13. Manu Tuilagi
Same age as me so I’ve been playing against him since I was 16 and I’m pretty sure he was the same size then as he is now! Force of nature.
14. Cheslin Kolbe
Not many people are smaller than me on a pitch, but even so this guy is so strong in contact and has the best footwork in rugby. Was electric at the World Cup.
15. Charles Piutau
The most chilled guy you’ll meet but he turns it on every weekend. Makes something from nothing every single game and tops metres made chart.