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Four World Cup winners among new openside flankers inducted into RugbyPass Hall of Fame

By Sam Smith

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The seventh wave of inductees into the RugbyPass Hall of Fame have been revealed as the finest openside flankers ever to grace the game were recognised on Tuesday.

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Home to the greatest rugby players of all-time, the RugbyPass Hall of Fame acknowledges and recognises the outstanding efforts of the trailblazers from the amateur era through to the global stars who light up the sport to this day.

The amalgamation of rugby’s top players from the amateur and professional eras has been reflected in the RugbyPass Hall of Fame’s first-ever induction announcement, from which 12 of rugby’s best openside flankers have been unveiled as inductees.

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Ryan Wilson on ‘almost’ becoming a Barbarians captain | RugbyPass Offload
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Ryan Wilson on ‘almost’ becoming a Barbarians captain | RugbyPass Offload

Among the headline names includes All Blacks legend Richie McCaw, widely regarded as arguably the greatest player to have ever played the game.

Made a World Rugby Hall of Fame inductee in 2019, McCaw remains the only person to have captained a team to back-to-back World Cup titles, having done so in 2011 and 2015.

He also shares the record for most World Rugby Player of the Year awards with three (2006, 2009 and 2010), while he was last year officially crowned World Rugby Player of the Decade.

McCaw is joined by compatriot Michael Jones, former England star Neil Back and Springboks great Schalk Burger as the other other World Cup winners among the new cohort of inductees.

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Jones helped the All Blacks claim the inaugural world title in 1987, while Back and Burger lifted the Webb Ellis Cup in 2003 and 2007, respectively.

McCaw and Jones are two of three New Zealanders unveiled as new additions to the RugbyPass Hall of Fame, with the other being Josh Kronfeld, while Back is joined by fellow Englishman Peter Winterbottom.

Back and Winterbottom are two of four former British and Irish Lions representatives among the new inductees, with the English pair being joined by ex-Wales captain Sam Warburton and former Scotland skipper Finlay Calder in the RugbyPass Hall of Fame.

There are also three current and former Wallabies players who have been included in the form of centurions George Smith, David Pocock and Michael Hooper, while France has been represented by the iconic Jean-Pierre Rives.

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Of all those included in the RugbyPass Hall of Fame, only the players with the most votes in each position will make the Fan 1st XV, a team made up of only the best players ever to have played rugby.

The door remains open for other players to become RugbyPass Hall of Famers, so register now to have your say and vote for your favourite inductee in the Fan 1st XV.

Current RugbyPass Hall of Fame Fan 1st XV

1. Os du Randt (South Africa, 1994-2007)
2. Sean Fitzpatrick (New Zealand, 1986-1997)
3. Owen Franks (New Zealand, 2009-2019)
4. Eben Etzebeth (South Africa, 2012-present)
5. Victor Matfield (South Africa, 2001-2015)
6. Jerome Kaino (New Zealand, 2004-2017)
7. Richie McCaw (New Zealand, 2001-2015)
8. Induction 08.12.2021
9. Induction 09.12.2021
10. Induction 10.12.2021
11. Induction 13.12.20221
12. Induction 14.12.2021
13. Induction 15.12.2021
14. Induction 16.12.2021
15. Induction 17.12.2021

Coach: Induction 20.12.2021
Referee: Induction 21.12.2021
Stadium: Induction 22.12.2021

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