Beauden Barrett and three World Cup winning Springboks named in Top League XV of 2021

Beauden Barrett and three World Cup winning Springboks named in Top League XV of 2021

The Japanese Top League concluded this weekend with Panasonic Wild Knights beating Suntory Sungoliath 26-31 in the Final on Sunday. 

 The competition organisers have since named the team of the competition which is filled with foreign stars who lit up the tournament. 

Four Springboks made the cut along with three All Blacks and two Kiwi-born stars. South African born Lappies Labuschagne also made the cut as too did Australian born stars Dylan Riley and Ben Gunter.

In his final season of rugby, Kenki Fukuoka was named the MVP of the competition.

Champions Panasonic have four players in the XV with Japanese internationals Keita Inagaki and Kenki Fukuoka both featuring while recent call up to the test squad Ben Gunter also features in the side. Finally, Dylan Riley is rewarded for his stellar season with a spot in the midfield.

The All Black duo of TJ Perenara and Beauden Barrett crack the nod at the halfbacks with Perenara being the only representative from the Red Hurricanes' team. Barrett is one of three Suntory players to make the team as he is joined by fellow New Zealander Tevita Li and prop Shinnnosuke Kakinaga.

Rugby World Cup winners Willie Le Roux (Toyota Verblitz), Kwagga Smith (Yamaha Jubilo) and Malcolm Marx (Kubota Spears) all make the squad with Springbok Ruan Botha also featuring from the Kubota Spears. Botha is joined in the second row by the third All Black star in Brodie Retallick, who is the only Kobe Kobelco Steelers representative. 

Despite winning the competition in their debut seasons in Japan, George Kruis and Hadleigh Parkes miss out on the squad. 

The team:

  1. Keita Inagaki - Panasonic Wild Knights 
  2. Malcolm Marx - Kubota Spears
  3. Shinnosuke Kakinaga - Suntory Sungoliath 
  4. Brodie Retallick - Kobe Kobelco Steelers
  5. Ruan Botha - Kubota Spears
  6. Ben Gunter - Panasonic Wild Knights
  7. Lappies Labuschagne - Kubota Spears
  8. Kwagga Smith - Yamaha Jubilo 
  9.  TJ Perenara - NTT Red Hurricanes
  10. Beauden Barrett - Suntory Sungoliath
  11. Kenki Fukuoka - Panasonic Wild Knights 
  12. Micheal Little - Mitishibishi Dynaboars
  13. Dylan Riley - Panasonic Wild Knights
  14. Tevita Li - Suntory Sungoliath
  15. Willie Le Roux - Toyota Verblitz

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