Edinburgh Rugby wing Tim Visser has made the RaboDirect PRO12 ‘Dream Team’ for the fourth successive season, with the highest number of individual votes of any player (12).
His impressive strike rate is an undeniable feature of the wide man’s selection, sitting on the top of the try-scoring charts for the fourth year in a row (two ahead of fellow Dream Team’er, George North).
Six of the 24 British & Irish Lions selected by Warren Gatland to tour Hong Kong and Australia later this month have earned places in the 2013 RaboDirect PRO12 Dream Team.
The two youngest members of the 125thanniversary tour party, Glasgow Warriors full back Stuart Hogg and Scarlets wing George North, join Scarlets centre Jonathan Davies in the three-quarter line, while three of the Ospreys’ five Lions, Adam Jones, Alun-Wyn Jones and Justin Tipuric.
For the first time in the three seasons in which there have been Italian clubs represented in the tournament, two of their players have been chosen.
Benetton Treviso forwards Leonardo Ghiraldini and Alessandro Zanni both feature in the RaboDirect PRO12 Dream Team pack as the efforts of their club in finishing seventh overall is reflected in their selection.
Once again the voting was carried out by the media from the four competing countries and no fewer than 81 players received nominations across the 15 positions. Players from all RaboDirect PRO12 clubs were nominated.
Joining Visser (12) as clear-cut winners in their positions are Leinster outside half Ian Madigan, who polled 11 votes, Scarlets’ North (10), flanker Tipuric (8) and Ulster No 8 Nick Williams (7).
The RaboDirect PRO12 Awards night is in Dublin on Sunday when the ‘Player of the Year’, ‘Coach of the Year’ and ‘Young Player of the Year’ will be announced.
2012/13 RaboDirect PRO12 Dream Team : 15 Stuart Hogg (Glasgow Warriors)14 George North (Scarlets), 13 Luke Marshall (Ulster Rugby) , 12 Jonathan Davies (Scarlets), 11 Tim Visser (Edinburgh Rugby); 10 Ian Madigan (Leinster Rugby), 9 Niko Watawalu (Glasgow Warriors);1 Ryan Grant (Glasgow Warriors) , 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini (Benetton Treviso), 3 Adam Jones (Ospreys), 4 Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys), 5 Al Kellock (Glasgow Warriors), 6 Alessandro Zanni (Benetton Treviso), 7 Justin Tipuric (Ospreys), 8 Nick Williams (Ulster Rugby).