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Super Rugby's most potent linebreakers over the last decade

By Online Editors
Damian McKenzie. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)

It takes an impressive display of strength and agility to be able to evade defenders and push through a gap in the defensive line.


In rugby, a player who can do this consistently is of immense value to their team.

World Rugby are investigating ways to salvage its threatened July Test schedule:

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It forces the opposition to send more defenders at them, creating opportunities for teammates.

We take a look at the players who have beaten the most defenders in a single Super Rugby game in the last 10 years.

Damian McKenzie

It is the Chiefs’ livewire playmaker Damian McKenzie who holds the record for most defenders beaten in a Super Rugby game in the last decade.

He beat 14 from as many carries against the Highlanders in 2018, making three clean breaks in the process. McKenzie gained just 37 metres in that game in March 2018.

However, the damage he caused in those metres is what counts as the Chiefs won 27-22 over their southern rivals.

Damian de Allende

Damian de Allende (Stormers) has beaten the most defenders (12) of any South African player in a Super Rugby game in the last 10 years and the most of any No.12.


De Allende also made four clean breaks and 118 metres gained in his 17 carries against the Brumbies – only one other South African inside centre has made more clean breaks in a Super Rugby game in this time period (Wynand Olivier – five v Chiefs in April 2011).

Digby Ioane

Digby Ioane has made the most of any Australian player in a Super Rugby game during this period and the joint-second most overall.

The Reds’ flyer beat 13 in his 19 carries for 158 metres gained against the Western Force in 2013.

In fact, only three wings for the Reds have gained more metres in a Super Rugby game that Ioane on that day in the last decade (Digby Ioane – 181m in 2011, Filipo Daugunu – 168m in 2018 and Rod Ravies – 159m in 2013).

– Rugby365


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Red and White Dynamight 2 hours ago
Duhan van der Merwe hat-trick sinks sloppy England to win Calcutta Cup

Up the Jocks ! a great team effort and 4 victories v on the bounce v their greatest rivals for those north of Hadrians. But, of course, before the celebrations survive the first pint of McEwans, it seems for some this Calcutta Cup match was merely 1 man v 15. What exactly is it about Sth Africans that make them such insufferable bores ? you rarely see Kiwis claiming Ireland victories (incl 3 x NZers) or Aussies for that matter (X1). You never see Samoans claiming France/England victories (Tuilagis). Or Fijians claim All Black victories. Scotland have had some great Kiwi-born players (S.Lineen/B.Laney/J.Leslie) - no surprise given their heritage - but they supported them as their ‘2nd team’. If anything they applaud their countrymen for taking opportunities and bettering themselves as professionals and, hopefully, competing on the World stage too. It takes some stratospheric level of stupid to ignore the opaque boundaries and qualifications that now allow Japan to be competitive, Portugal to win a RWC game, Argentinians to play for Italy, New Zealanders to dominate Tongan and Samoan teams - and not celebrate that World Rugby is more competitive and better for it. Everywhere on social media, even when the post has zero to do with Sth Africans (schoolboy rugby being the most obvious barrel-scraping eg - these are KIDS), they pile in and try to claim the “we are better/stronger/faster” with such voluminous levels of obnoxious bile, that it poisons the mere celebration of the sport itself. These are not ‘rugby fans’ that can marvel at the Game they Play in Heaven, but rather some misplaced insecure-fuelled poison that they need to extract from deep inside their psyche. Its hard to understand the exact reason for the massive chip on their shoulders and their desperation for the victimhood/noone-loves-us-we-dont-care, but it seems accelerated with their LOTTO Cup 1-pt wins, like gasoline on the fire. Obsessed with ‘cheating’ refs and ‘cheating’ opposition (Rassies video bloopers during Lions tour; McCaw’s whole career) and celebrating their own thuggery (#JUSTICE4 the dirtiest player in pro-rugby history), when luck suddenly goes their way (1995 Final vs an acutely comprimised ABs; Kilosi<->Cane cards in 2023 Final) or their players escape adequate penalty (Etzebeth 1-handed non-intercepts; Kolbe illegal chargedown; Etzebeth cynically retreating in the AB backline) so obviously that its clearly been coached, then suddenly its AOK as long its SA that benefit directly from it. The schizophrenic nature of Sth Africans presents them as good company in person - and lets face it, theyre EVERYWHERE now and cant get out of their own country fast enough - but as anonymous keyboard ninjas their true nature shines out as one beset with a dark undercurrent of toxic self-absorption. It appears that the bravado appears only under the protection of anonymity, a cowardice of insufferable reverse-flagellation to make themselves feel proud when the mirror stares back at them. Give yourselves a long slow clap. Well done to the entire Scotland team including all those born south of Hadrians Wall. Playing a fantastic fast pace of fluid ball-in-hands rugby that seems almost foreign to other teams. Och aye the noo.

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