The 20 Greatest Rugby Players of All Time

||The 20 Greatest Rugby Players of All Time

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We take a look at the greatest players to have ever graced the game of rugby and rank our top 20 greatest rugby players of all time;

20.Jonny Wilkinson (Fly Half, England, 91 caps)

Wilkinson is just about the most iconic figure in English rugby after guiding his nation to their only Rugby World Cup triumph. For any Englishman to have won over French fans as he did in Toulon only further proves his talent.

19.JPR Williams (Full Back, Wales, 55 caps)

Williams must be considered one of the greatest full backs to have ever played rugby. A total all rounder who was solid in defence and exciting to watch in attack.

18.Phillippe Sella (Centre, France, 111 caps)

There aren’t too many players who break the 100 cap mark in international test rugby, Sella however was one of the greats. What France wouldn’t do for a player like him right now.

17.Martin Johnson (Lock, England, 84 caps)

Johnson’s coaching career may not have taken off as many had hoped, however as a player he was a rare talent. An inspirational leader who had no issue putting his head where it hurt, he was instrumental in the 2003 World Cup.

16.Willie John McBride (Number 8, Ireland, 63 caps)

McBride is one of the first names people think of when the Lions are mentioned, a truly class act both on and off the field.  McBride led from the front and made sure no man was left behind.

15.Sean Fitzpatrick (Hooker, New Zealand, 92 caps)

The former All Blacks hooker had the dynamism of a centre and the aggression of an openside, he essentially set the benchmark for all modern hookers to follow during his 92 times capped international career.

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14.George Gregan (Scrum Half, Australia, 132 caps)

Until recently Gregan was the most capped international player of all time having been an integral part of an impressive Wallabies side during his international career.

13.Joost van der Westhuizen (Scrum Half, South Africa, 89 caps)

Simply one of the most dangerous runners of the ball in the nine shirt that has ever been seen in rugby. A true icon of the game who is still influencing scrum half play today.

12.George Smith, (Openside, Australia, 111 caps)

Smith is one of the most underrated players of all time outside of Australia. Had he not opted to move to Japan and then France there’s no doubt he would still be going toe-to-toe with McCaw.

11.Jonah Lomu (Wing, New Zealand, 63 caps)

At times Lomu single handedly tore sides apart such was his size and strength. A true legend of the game, although maybe not quite as complete of a player as some make out, hence him missing out on the top 10.

10.John Eales (Lock, Australia, 86 caps)

Eales may not have been the loudest player out on the field but his more reserved demeanour still helped steer the Wallabies to two World Cups during his time. He wasn’t half bad in the line-out either.

9.Zinzan Brooke (Number 8, New Zealand, 58 caps)

Brooke was quite simply one of the most outrageously gifted forwards to have ever played rugby. With the kicking ability of a fly-half and the strength of a forward he was one of the greatest number 8’s of all time.

8.David Campese (Wing, Australia, 101 caps)

Campese was an extraordinary talent with vision and skills that made him stand-out even in a quality Wallabies side. He always seemed to have a second more than everyone else on the pitch thanks to his timing and vision.

7.Brian O’Driscoll (Centre, Ireland, 133 caps)

O’Driscoll is quite possibly the greatest centre to have ever graced the game. A world class talent who redefined the play of a 13 whilst single handedly dragging a poor Irish team out of the doldrums when he first burst onto the scene.

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6.Hugo Porta (Fly Half, Argentina, 58 caps)

Porta can be considered one of the main reasons Los Pumas are where they are today. A class act who lifted them into the upper tiers of rugby, his kicking was second to none which he combined with great vision.

5.Michael Jones (Openside, New Zealand, 55 caps)

Jones has simply been one of the greatest forwards of all time, mixing incredible handling skills with a tenacity at the breakdown others simply couldn’t live with. His pace and defence were also key elements of his game.

4.Serge Blanco (Full Back, France, 93 caps)

Blanco is the epitome of all that is/was great about French rugby. A player with unrivaled flair that made him an absolute joy to watch as he pulled of feats that others couldn’t even contemplate.

3.Richie McCaw (Openside, New Zealand, 135 caps)

The fact McCaw is possibly the most hated man is huge testament to his craft, an absolute master of the breakdown who has been integral to an incredible All Blacks side, he will long be remembered as a truly world class player.

2.Dan Carter (Fly Half, New Zealand, 101 caps)

For me Carter is quite simply the greatest fly half to have ever played the game. A total class act who is solid in defence and a constant threat in attack, he has set a new benchmark which all fly halves will now be judged by.

1.Gareth Edwards (Scrum Half, Wales, 53 caps)

Edwards was quite simply the master of every element of the game, his passing, kicking, running and reading of the game were second to none. He would be a standout player in any team through the years.

Who do you think is the greatest rugby player of all time?

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By |2014-11-13T16:24:13+00:00November 13th, 2014|

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