Dream Team: Dave Baldwin – former Sale lock

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Dave Baldwin1. Martin Whitcombe – One of the first out and out ball-playing props. He was great around the field and a brilliant carrier, rather than just a good scrummager. Also a great bloke.

2. Steve Diamond – He’s an aggressive character and although he wasn’t the biggest he more than made up for it with his attitude. He seems to have taken that attitude into coaching.

3. Jeff Probyn – Probably the best scrummager I have ever played against. Whoever was propping against him used to have an appalling game because he was just unrelenting.

4. Martin Johnson – He was still quite young when I played against him but he was incredibly competitive in every  facet of the game. An absolute legend.

5. Ian Jones – A very athletic second row but a lot more aggressive than people seem to think. He was brilliant for New Zealand and for Gloucester, would be great alongside Johnson.

6. David Erskine – Exactly the sort of guy you want to be at blindside, he would make tackle after tackle and was definitely someone you want on your side.

7. Peter Winterbottom – I was lucky enough to make my debut for Yorkshire with him and played a lot more with him down the years. He was a fantastic all-round player.

8. Dean Richards – A bear of a man who could singlehandedly change a game. I  only played in one team which beat him, that shows what a  competitor he was.

9. Dewi Morris – I played with him when he came to Sale after Orrell and he was like a fourth back row. He had an incredible heart and was the perfect scrum-half for a forward.

10. Paul Turner – Paul is the main reason why Sale are where they are. He turned the club around and was one of the most talented players I have known.

11. Rory Underwood – He had out and out gas and was an incredible finisher. Probably the best I have ever seen.

12. Denis Charvet – The Rolls Royce of centres. We played together a few times for the Barbarians and he just had so much time on the ball.

13. Jos Baxendell – A very good mate of mine and someone who should have got a lot more caps. He had great ball skills and ran the most incredible lines, just unfortunate to coincide with Jeremy Guscott.

14. Jason Robinson – When he came from League  he just did things no one else could. As a League fan I knew how good he was, but his transition  was incredible.

15. Jim Mallinder – Big Jim was a forward’s dream as a full-back, brilliant under the high ball and you always knew he would make ground when running the ball back.


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