The best XV of the 2015 Blowes Clothing Cup | Photos, Poll

THE 2015 Blowes Clothing Cup season is over, with Orange Emus deservedly lifting the trophy after defeating a gallant Orange City side at Endeavour Oval in last Saturday's grand final.

So, there's no better time to sit back and reflect on what's been an incredible season of rugby union and specifically, take a gander at who the best players of 2015 were.

Here's the starting XV, and bench, Central Western Daily sports journalists Matt Findlay and Nick McGrath think are those worthy of being branded the Blowes Clothing Cup team of the year for 2015.

1 NAS HAVEALETA (Orange Emus)

The competition's premier prop, Havealeta ate front-row opponents in 2015, helping provide the greens with the competition's most consistent scrum.

He was similar to a runaway boulder with pill in hand, so much so Indiana Jones wouldn't look out of place running away from him when Havealeta had a carry.

He was a world fitter than 2014, and his performances went to another level as a result.

2 TOM GOOLAGONG (Orange Emus)

In terms of out-and-out hookers none were better than Goolagong this season, even if he missed a third of it through injury.

His clinical execution at lineout time was pivotal in Emus' success, and his work-rate around the paddock was akin to a back-rower, plus, he regularly rattled opposition ball-runners' rib cages in defence.

3 LOGAN BROCKMANN (Orange City Lions)

Still a pup, selection in the NSW Country Colts side spurred Brockmann to big things in 2015.

He shifted from Orange City's colts side to the Lions' top grade front-row effortlessly, despite being a back-rower by trade.

He played as such, providing the Lions with a fourth back-rower on the field which was particularly evident in his support play.

Held his own against much bigger props at scrum-time, and managed to sniff out tries pretty often.


A classic lock rarely given the kudos he deserves, Hughes-Clapp took Emus' to new heights in 2015 - literally - running the lineout like the veteran he is.

Hughes-Clapp also developed into one of Emus' best ball-runners, and became a genuine defensive threat in 2015 as well.

His moustache gave him extra points too.

5 SHAUN McHUGH (Dubbo Kangaroos)

The 2015 Blowes Clothing Cup player of the year, McHugh was one of the first selected for this side.

'Roos skipper and inspiration, McHugh was one of if not the best lock in 2015.

He was strong on the carry, exceptional in defence and his presence at the breakdown was pivotal to 'Roos late charge at the premiership.

We'd give McHugh the captaincy in this side as well, such is the respect he has across the competition.


"Me get ball, me run straight, me tackle hard, if me get hurt me not worry about it."

Watching from the sideline, you could be forgiven for assuming that's all that ran through Cosgrove's head in 2015, such was his complete disregard for personal safety with or without a ball.

One of the few genuine No.6s left in the competition, Cosgrove was Emus' best this season and one of the most consistent flankers in the competition.

7 DUNCAN YOUNG (Orange City Lions)

No one in the Blowes Clothing Cup was as good, as often, as Young, and he was our pick for player of the year - although McHugh is more than deserving recipient.

Although he rarely took a carry, his presence and speed at the breakdown was nigh on unmatched and he never missed a tackle. On top of that, he provided the Lions with a booming boot when necessary.

Plus, he knows the rules better than even the referees and bent them as far as possible accordingly - like only the best No.7s do.

8 TATAFU NA'ANIUMOTU (Orange City Lions)

Big, fast, strong and angry - on the field anyway - Na'aniumotu just pipped Bathurst Bulldogs' Izaak Breen for the No.8 jersey.

Despite only playing half of the season in first grade, he ended up Orange City's captain and his performances after being given the role were breath-taking.

He was Orange City's go to man in the pack, and while that made the Lions somewhat predictable through their forwards it didn't stop the big man being effective.

There wasn't as devastating a ball runner anywhere else in the competition.

9 TJ CUNYNGHAME (Orange Emus)

There's no question, Cunynghame was the best halfback in the competition in 2015.

His service was crisp and fast, his kicking game strong, and more than anything he provided Emus an abrasiveness rarely seen in a halfback.

Then, combine that with his bone-crunching defence, and ability to easily play as somewhat of a ninth forward - he played No.8 all the way up until colts - and you've got a non-decision for us.

No one came close to stealing Cunynghame's No.9 jersey in this side.

10 ADAM PERRI (Orange Emus)

Although he'd be the first to say he didn't reach his lofty heights of 2014, Perri played in the toughest position on the ground - outside the front-row - and led his side all the way to a premiership.

He's an automatic selection for us as a result.

11 CARTER HIRINI (Orange Emus)

He scored 27 tries in 2015, 26 of which he scored in the regular season, he was the quickest guy in the competition and like the best wingers, continually trotted out questionable haircuts.

'Nuff said.

12 JAKE DAVIS (Orange City Lions)

Davis, Orange City's best in 2014, built on last season and became one of the premier centres in the competition this year.

Despite lining up against bigger opponents nigh on every single game, Davis continually proved his strength - particularly in contact - and gave Orange City unmeasurable confidence and momentum through the 12 and 13 channels.

He also gave the Lions a desperately needed goalkicker after Mesui Lemoto was ruled out for the year.

13 ROTA SETU (Mudgee Wombats)

Much of the reason Mudgee made the 2015 finals was Setu.

A former National Rugby Championship player, Setu gave the Wombats the strike power through the backs they desperately lacked in 2014, scoring countless tries and setting up even more for the men outside him.

His footwork at the line was unmatched in 2015, and his strength in contact almost impossible to defend.

Mudgee's best win of the year, over eventual premiers Emus early in the season, was pretty much all because of Setu.

14 MOA KAVAEFIAFI (Dubbo Kangaroos)

Easily Roos' most improved player through 2015, Kavaefiafi played across Dubbo's backline but finds his home on the wing in this side.

His defence was brutal at times, and he drew comparison with former phenom Filisione Pauta with ball in hand.

By the way, for those playing at home it's pronounced Kavva-fee-arfee.

15 JOE LASAGAVIBAU (Orange City Lions)

He was Orange City's best all year by a long, long way, whether he was wearing No.15 or No.10.

At his most dangerous in space, he scored countless tries and claimed even more assists this season.

In fact, we'd go as far as saying Orange City wouldn't have done as well they did in 2015 without Lasagavibau's influence at the back.

He was phenomenal at rugby league, but, somewhat unbelievably, he proved even better in the 15-man code.


16 GABE BROWN (Cowra Eagles)

17 CHARLIE TUCK (Narromine Gorillas)

18 PETER FITZSIMMONS (Bathurst Bulldogs)

19 ELI KINSCHER (Dubbo Kangaroos)

20 IZAAK BREEN (Bathurst Bulldogs)

21 CHRIS MILLER (Cowra Eagles)

22 BLAKE RIDGES (CSU Bathurst)


This story The best XV of the 2015 Blowes Clothing Cup | Photos, Poll first appeared on Daily Liberal.


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