12 Players To Watch Out For In 2016

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We take a look at the future stars of World Rugby who could be set to step foot into the spotlight throughout 2016…

1.Stuart McCloskey (Ireland)

McCloskey is being touted as the future of Ireland’s midfield alongside Robbie Henshaw. An absolute unit who is also capable of taking on the kicking duties, he has just been called up to Ireland’s Six Nations training squad so expect to see plenty more of him this year.

2.Maro Itoje (England)

A former England U20 captain who is making huge waves for Saracens this year, expect Itoje to make his full international debut sooner rather than later. Capable of playing at either lock or flanker, Itoje is an incredible athlete and looks set to get better.

3.Elliott Dixon (New Zealand)

With the retirement of Richie McCaw and Ardie Savea opting to play sevens this year, expect to see Dixon in the famous All Blacks shirts sooner rather than later. Dixon scored a Lomu-esque try in the Super Rugby final and looks set for more big plays this year.

4.Yacouba Camara (France)

With Thierry Dusautoir stepping down from international duty after the World Cup, Camara looks like the natural successor. He has spent plenty of time learning under the former France captain, but now looks ready to step out of his shadow for Les Bleus.

5.Nic Stirzaker (Australia)

With Genia and White both having left Australia for France, Stirzaker looks set to provide Phipps with some serious competition at scrum half for the Wallabies. He has great distribution and an impressive running game which should suit the Wallabies style of play.

6.Manuel Montero (Argentina)

The Pumas winger only makes this list having been plagued by injuries over the last year or so. Had it not been for missing so much game time he would have had a great deal more international experience, but 2016 could now be the year for him to really kick on.

7.Hallam Amos (Wales)

With both Leigh Halfpenny and Liam Williams suffering various injury problems, 2016 could be the year when Amos is given his international break. He has already shown some of what he can do in the World Cup, but has shown for the Dragons he still has a lot more to offer.

8.Tom Bliss (USA)

The current USA U20 captain, and a member of the Wasps academy, Bliss is already highly regarded in his homeland. Learning under players like Joe Simpson and Dan Robson could see him develop into the Eagle’s long term solution at scrum half.

9.Jonathan Danty (France)

With Wesley Fofana and Gael Fickou available to new France coach Guy Noves, Les Bleus midfield is already stacked with talent, however Danty looks set to push both of them hard for a place in the side over the next 12 months.

10.Nathan Hughes (England)

Hughes doesn’t become available for England until later this year, however it looks highly likely that he will be selected for their summer tour. A bulldozing number 8 who has been a stand out player in the Premiership for the last 18 months for Wasps.

11.Samu Kerevi (Australia)

Kerevi was unlucky to miss out on the World Cup after an outstanding season in a poor Reds side. However 2016 looks set to be the season Kerevi stakes his claim for a spot in the Wallabies midfield, especially with Matt Giteau unlikely to feature now the World Cup is over.

12.CJ Stander (Ireland)

Ireland have been crying out for competition at number 8 with Jamie Heaslip having claimed the position almost unopposed. In Stander they at last have a viable challenger who looks like he could be set for a call up sooner rather than later.

Which players do you think are set to breakthrough in 2016?

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