The 50 best rugby players in the world 2008
Tuesday 13 January 2009
We've watched the games and deliberated, cogitated and argued long into the night. It's a nigh on impossible task and we certainly don't expect you to agree with us, but here it is: our countdown of the best 50 players on the planet.
The exclusion of Danny Cipriani and Paul Sackey, or the fact we placed Juan-Martin Hernandez ahead of Dan Carter might seem a suprise, but after much discussion, that's what we thought.
We also resisted the temptation to flood the list with northern hemisphere names, but quite frankly, we'd have looked foolish in the extreme given the pasting the home unions took at the hands of the big three from down south last autumn.
We've also placed a lumbering 19st lock higher than a free-scoring wing, which might cause some uproar, but that's the idea of any good countdown - to provoke debate. Let us know what you think by commenting below.
For the full list of the 50 best rugby players in the world, click here.
Arsenal transfer news: Karim Benzema, Edinson Cavani and Gregorz Krychowiak were all linked but Wenger and Gunners fail on deadline day
Arsenal transfer news: Gunners fans devastated as they become only team in top 5 European leagues not to sign outfield player
David De Gea: Manchester United in bitter war of words with Real Madrid over failed transfer
David De Gea, Peter Odemwingie and the 18 weirdest transfer deadline day stories
Anthony Martial fee: 'Add-on' includes Manchester United signing winning the Ballon d'Or
- 2 Moscow voted the world's unfriendliest city
- 3 The excuses your boss is most likely to believe when you call in sick
- 4 I'm pansexual – here are the five biggest misconceptions about my sexuality
- 5 More than 11,000 Icelanders offer to house Syrian refugees to help European crisis
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don’t change Europe’s attitude to refugees, what will?
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be