/ Rugby

Five provincial players in RaboDirect Pro12 Dream Team

Updated: Thursday, 03 May 2012 17:31 | Comments

Leinster full-back Isa Nacewa was one of two Leinster players named in the side
Leinster full-back Isa Nacewa was one of two Leinster players named in the side

Irish provinces have supplied five of the 15 players selected in the RaboDirect Pro12 Dream Team.

Leinster and Ulster have two players each in the team while Munster have one.

Runaway Pro12 leaders Leinster had full-back Isa Nacewa and hooker Richardt Strauss named. Scrum-half Ruan Pienaar and lock Dan Tuohy are the Ulster players selected, while Munster tighthead BJ Botha is the sole player to get in from the southern province.

Nacewa, Pienaar and Strauss are three of the five players to retain their places from last year.

Tuohy and South African-born Strauss are both Irish qualified but none of the quintet were part of the Ireland international set-up this year.

Munster bound outside-centre Casey Laulala, currently with Cardiff, won a place in the team for the second year in a row.

Dutch-born Edinburgh wing Tim Visser, who will qualify to play for Scotland this summer, won his place for the third time in a row.

Visser is in third place on the all-time try scoring list behind Irish duo Shane Horgan (39) and Tommy Bowe (46).

The team was selected by a team of 14 journalists from Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales and was picked after 19 rounds of the competition.

Leinster back-up Ian Madigan just missed out on selection at out-half, finishing level with Duncan Weir on four votes but losing on the basis of Weir’s superior scoring record.

Five-time selection Jamie Heaslip missed out on a place at number eight for the first time since the team was picked at the end of the 2006/7 season.

RaboDirect Pro12 Dream Team 2011/12

15. Isa Nacewa (Leinster)
14. Tim Visser (Edinburgh)
13. Casey Laulala (Cardiff Blues)
12. Ashley Beck (Ospreys)
11. Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues)
10. Duncan Weir (Glasgow)
9. Ruan Pienaar (Ulster)

1. Jon Welsh (Glasgow)
2. Richardt Strauss (Leinster)
3. BJ Botha (Munster)
4. Dan Tuohy (Ulster)
5. Tom Ryder (Glasgow)
6. Dave Denton (Edinburgh)
7. Justin Tipuric (Ospreys)
8. Ben Morgan (Scarlets)

Do you agree with the RaboDirect Pro12 selection? Which players from your province should have made the cut?

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