Edinburgh dominate Guinness Pro14 "Dream Team" with six inclusions
Scant consolation for missing out on final but Conference B toppers rewarded lion’s share of selection by media
They may have suffered disappointment at the weekend when they fell at the semi-final stage of the interrupted 2019-20 season but Edinburgh have dominated the Guinness Pro14 “Dream Team” with six inclusions in the XV.
Edinburgh lost 22-19 to Ulster at BT Murrayfield on Saturday, missing out on a chance to face Leinster in the Dublin showpiece this weekend but have rewarded for their Conference B-topping performance over the course of a campaign truncated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The capital contingent is split equally between forwards and backs with loosehead Pierre Schoeman making his second straight “Dream Team in” as many seasons, Fijian international Bill Mata, who picked up last year's Players' Player of the Season, selected at No 8 and lock Grant Gilchrist, who made his 150th appearance for the club in the defeat by Ulster paired with Leinster's Scott Fardy in the second-row.
In the backs, Blair Kinghorn, who made the 2017-18 version, at full-back and the year's top tryscorer Duhan van der Merwe, the South African-born now Scottish-qualified wing, picked alongside compatriot Jaco van der Walt, who will be eligible for Scotland in mid-November and won the Golden Boot last year, selected as playmaker.
Tomorrow the Guinness Players’ Player of the Season and Guinness Coach of the Season, for which Edinburgh coach Richard Cockerill must be among the favourites, will be announced.
Media from across all five countries including former players and coaches voted for the Dream Team. Players needed to appear a minimum of eight appearances during the current campaign.
Dream Team 2019/20
15 Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh)
14 Monty Ioane (Benetton)
13 Rey Lee-Lo (Cardiff Blues)
12 Stuart McCloskey (Ulster)
11 Duhan van der Merwe (Edinburgh)
10 Jaco van der Walt (Edinburgh)
9 John Cooney (Ulster)
1 Pierre Schoeman (Edinburgh)
2 Joseph Dweba (Cheetahs)
3 Leon Brown (Dragons)
4 Scott Fardy (Leinster)
5 Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh)
6 Max Deegan (Leinster)
7 Will Connors (Leinster)
8 Bill Mata (Edinburgh)
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