Two Jersey Reds players have been named in the Greene King IPA Championship 'Dream Team' for the 2016/17 season.
Prop Simon Kerrod and lock Pierce Phillips were both chosen after a poll of the Coaches of the 11 Championship clubs, maintaining a rich tradition of Jersey players in the Dream XV.
Both players are leaving Jersey having agreed moves to Aviva Premiership club Worcester Warriors for the 2017/18 season. South African Kerrod, 24, joined the Reds midway through the 2015/16 season and has been a cornerstone of the pack since then, making a total of around 35 competitive appearances.
Phillips, also 24, spent three seasons in Jersey after joining from Darlington Mowden Park in summer 2014. He made an estimated 56 competitive appearances during this time and earned his Dream Team selection for this season in spite of missing half of the season after sustaining an injury in September. His return to action coincided with his side's fine run in the Championship - taking the Reds to the cusp of the play-offs - and the British & Irish Cup.
Former Jersey players named in the Dream XV:
The full selection is below:
1. Prop – Lewis Boyce (Yorkshire Carnegie)
For the second year running a loose-head coached by Steve Boden is selected at No.1, with England U20 Junior World Cup winner Boyce following in the footsteps of ex-Jersey player Sam Lockwood. Boyce is a destructive ball carrier and vastly improved scrummager who fought off stiff competition from Cornish Pirates’ Marlen Walker.
2. Hooker – Phil Nilsen (Yorkshire Carnegie)
Nilsen, who passed 200 games for the club in his testimonial season, gives his heart and soul to the cause and does the basics very well. Huge work rate. Honourable mentions go to David Paice, Alun Walker and last year’s winner Ben Hunter.
3. Prop – Simon Kerrod (Jersey Reds)
Kerrod has been the cornerstone of Jersey’s juggernaut pack. A powerful scrummager who likes to get around the park, Kerrod attracted nine out of the 11 votes cast – the highest ratio of any player - with Richmond’s Rupert Harden claiming the other two.
4. Lock – Pierce Phillips (Jersey Reds)
The man packing down in Jersey's engine room will join Kerrod at Worcester Warriors next season after impressing in his third season with the Island side. A towering presence in the lineout, whose leadership qualities have shone through.
5. Lock – Glen Young (Doncaster Knights)
Dual-registered Newcastle player who has spent most of the season with the Knights. Superb aerially, Young dominates re-starts and runs the lineout well. The former Scotland U20 international works tirelessly and is highly thought of at Castle Park.
6. Flanker – Jack Ram (Doncaster Knights)
Typical Tongan force of nature whose work at the breakdown is second to none, plus he is also a good link up man in attack. Ram arrived in December but made a big enough impression in his time on the pitch to see off the likes of Ealing’s Kieran Murphy.
7. Flanker – Blair Cowan (London Irish)
Strong over the ball and in the tackle, Scotland capped Cowan has continued to play at international standard in the Championship and has weighed in with six league tries. He picked up five of the 11 votes cast.
No. 8 – Ryan Burrows (Yorkshire Carnegie)
Burrows, one of the Championship’s most consistent performers, has earned himself a move to Newcastle Falcons with his strong ball carrying from the base of the scrum or ruck. He edges out Jersey's Nick Haining, Mark Bright and Tom Duncan despite playing a mix of six and eight this season.
9. Scrum-half – Scott Steele (London Irish)
Nuggety number nine with an eye for the gap who seems to get better with every passing season. Marginally preferred to Richmond’s Sam Stuart and Bedford’s Jordan Burns.
10. Fly-half – James Marshall (London Irish)
Outstanding ball player who has given Irish a real attacking edge this season. Astute decision-maker with the skill set to match, Marshall was nominated as the league’s best 10 by seven of the 11 coaches.
11. Wing – Jason Harries (London Scottish)
Former Wales Sevens star with power and pace in abundance, Harries has shone in what has been an otherwise disappointing season for Scottish, scoring 11 league tries. Edged out Doncaster's Tyson Lewis.
12. Centre – Joe Munro (Ealing Trailfinders)
Despite his impressive physique, there is more to Munro’s game than just crashing the ball up the middle. The 6’5 centre is also an accomplished distributor and has generally enjoyed an excellent second season at Vallis Way.
13. Centre - Asaeli Tikoirotuma (London Irish)
A game breaker and try scorer who makes things happen whilst in possession. Aled Jenkins, Andrew Bulumakau and Robbie Ferguson all had claims on the No.13 jersey too, but the Fijian international’s x-factor tipped the verdict his way.
14. Wing – Jonah Holmes (Yorkshire Carnegie)
Jet-heeled winger/full-back who knows his way to the line. Carnegie’s most dangerous back throughout the season and the scorer of 13 Championship tries, the joint second-highest in the league.
15. Full-back – Paul Jarvis (Doncaster Knights)
Jarvis returns to the No.15 berth in which he was selected in 2014/15 following another season of consistently high performances. Arguably the best counter-attacking full-back in the league with his pace and ability to spot a gap. Punches above his weight in defence too.
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