Jersey props Sam Lockwood and Harry Williams have been names in
a Championship Dream Team chosen by the division's Coaches.
The front row pair secured the most votes for the shirt numbers
1 and 3 in the select team. They follow in the footsteps of their
front row colleague Jon Brennan, who was named in the equivalent XV
Greene King IPA Championship Player of the Year nominees Mark
Bright, Alex Rieder and Matthew Morgan are all named in the Dream
Team alongside the Jersey duo.
Bristol playmaker Morgan attracted the highest number of votes for
an individual player with eight, one more than Cornish Pirates pair
Tom Kessell and Darren Barry and Nottingham's Shaun Malton.
Meanwhile, London Scottish number 8 Bright makes the Dream Team for
the third year in a row and is the only player to retain his place
from last season.
Play-off semi-finalists, Bristol, Worcester, London Scottish and
Rotherham provide two-thirds of the stellar line-up between them,
however the depth of playing talent throughout the Championship is
reflected by the fact four other clubs - Cornish Pirates, Jersey,
Doncaster and Nottingham - are also represented.
GKIPA Championship Dream Team
1. Sam Lockwood (Jersey)
An aggressive defender and destructive ball-carrier whose
scrummaging has come on leaps and bounds in this his first full
season in the Channel Islands. The 27-year-old loose-head played 20
league games and scored four tries after an early season injury
2. Shaun Malton (Nottingham)
Nottingham's Exeter-bound Player of the Year beat off competition
from last year's hooker Tom Cruse and England Under-20
international Jack Walker. The all-action former London Irish
player made 25 appearances for the Green & Whites, scoring five
3. Harry Williams (Jersey)
The 23-year-old tight-head had a superb first full season in the
Championship, at the end of which he earned a two-year deal with
Aviva Premiership club Exeter Chiefs. Like his front row partner
Lockwood, Williams had an injury disrupted start to the season but
was the cornerstone of the Jersey pack from Christmas onwards. He
made 18 league appearances, scored a try in the January win at
Doncaster and was named man-of-the-match later that month for a
talismanic display against former club Nottingham.
4. Mike Williams (Worcester Warriors)
A player who always gives his all for the Warriors, Williams'
attitude on and off the pitch has remained top-class even after his
close season move to Leicester was announced. A powerful
ball-carrier, destructive tackler and superb lineout technician who
is comfortable with ball in hand.
5. Darren Barry (Cornish Pirates)
An extremely hard-working second row who has been a key cog in the
Pirates' engine room for the past three seasons. Worcester will
benefit from his lineout skills and nitty-gritty work in the tight
exchanges after signing him for next season. Bristol's Ian Evans
ran him close for his place in the second row.
6. Alex Rieder (Rotherham Titans)
Not the biggest of back-rows but hugely influential in most
aspects of the game. Rieder's priceless ability to spin out of
tackles makes him one of Rotherham's top metre markers. Likes to
get his hands on the ball and provides a good link between forwards
7. Jack Preece (Rotherham Titans)
Fast to the breakdown and immensely strong over the ball, Preece
regularly wins turnover ball he has no right to. The former England
Sevens player is not too shabby at hooker either. Jack Lam of
Bristol pushed him all the way for the number seven jersey.
8. Mark Bright (London Scottish)
Bright's footballing ability, pace off the mark and ability to be
in the right place at the right time helped him set a new
Championship individual try scoring record of 24 in the regular
season, as well as an England Sevens call-up. Yorkshire Carnegie's
Ryan Burrows and Mitch Eadie of Bristol rarely have a bad game and
can count themselves unlucky not to have made the Dream XV.
9. Tom Kessell (Cornish Pirates)
Joins Pirates backs coach and former Dream Team regular Gavin
Cattle in being called the best in his business at scrum-half this
level. Possesses a good box kick, a swift pass of both hands and is
quick enough to fill in on the wing when the need arises. The proud
Cornishman joined Bristol on a short-term deal in February ahead of
his summer move to Northampton.
10. Matthew Morgan (Bristol)
A will-o'-the-wisp fly-half who consistently carves open defences
with his brilliant footwork and deft distribution skills. With over
150 league points to his name the young Welshman has also proved to
be a reliable goal-kicker. Rotherham's James McKinney was the 'best
of the rest' at 10.
11. David Lemi (Bristol)
Still a finisher of the highest order after all these years. His
battle with Charlie Amesbury for a place on the wing has brought
the best out of the 'pocket rocket' with the Samoan speedster
racing home for 10 tries in 15 regular season appearances.
12. Andy Symons (Worcester Warriors)
Despite a wealth of talent at centre at Sixways, Symons has made
the number 12 shirt his own and has also taken on the majority of
the kicking duties, with an impressive success rate. Bristol's Ben
Mosses had strong claims on the inside centre berth with three
votes to Symons' four.
13. Max Stelling (Worcester Warriors)
Stelling, who spent half of the 2012/13 on loan to Jersey, makes
up an all-Worcester midfield partnership after a superb first
season as a professional. Constantly a menace to Championship
defences with his pace and power, the 21-year-old has racked-up try
after try and kept experienced campaigner Alex Grove on the
sidelines. Drew Locke proved to be Stelling's main
rival at outside centre after a fine season with
Jersey - Locke was the joint top try-scorer for
the Island side, though he will be leaving this month prior to
joining London Scottish.
14. Sam Smith (Worcester Warriors)
Does the basics well, makes his tackles and has repeatedly
finished teams off with late tries, as Yorkshire Carnegie found out
to their cost when Smith scored four second-half tries against them
at Headingley. The former Harlequins man finished with 14 tries
from the regular at a ratio of just under one per game.
15. Paul Jarvis (Doncaster Knights)
While the Championship's leading points scorer Dougie Flockhart
was perhaps unlucky to miss out on the right wing berth, Doncaster
team-mate Paul Jarvis gets the nod at full-back ahead of
Rotherham's Sean Scanlon and London Scottish's Pete Lydon. Jarvis'
vision and pace made him a constant threat in attack. Defensively
he was rock solid too, winning many an aerial battle despite his
relatively small stature.
07 Dec 2022
Biljon's side seek eighth straight league win this season