Team of the week: European finalists and Super Rugby stars
By Rhodri Jeremiah and Keith Moore
Last Updated: 15/05/17 3:51pm
Players from Europe's two Murrayfield finals fill most of the jerseys, but there is room for some Super Rugby stars.
Saracens lifted the Champions Cup trophy in Edinburgh on Saturday, while Stade Francais fought from behind to edge out Gloucester in the same stadium the night before.
In Super Rugby the Crusaders retained their unbeaten start to the season while the Kings continued their resurgence with a first ever derby win.
15. Alex Goode (Saracens)
Scott Spedding had an influential game for Clermont over the weekend, making the most metres and the second-most carries out of anyone on the pitch from either side.
But for pure impact on the game, Alex Goode gets the nod in our team. Goode's clever kick set up Ashton for the opening score, and the full-back scored the winning try as Saracens retained their Champions Cup title with a 28-17 win in Edinburgh.
14. Chris Ashton (Saracens)
What a send-off for Chris Ashton as he bode farewell to Saracens by crossing for the opening score at Murrayfield, giving him the record for the most tries scored by an individual in Europe with 37.
The winger also brought about a defensive turnover as he helped his side to back-to-back titles.
13. Geoffrey Doumayrou (Stade Francais)
Geoffrey Doumayrou topped the table - tied with Sergio Parisse - for the most carries by a Stade Francais player in the Challenge Cup final as the Frenchmen broke their European drought with a 25-17 win over Gloucester.
Doumayrou beat five defenders in those 13 carries, the majority of which he danced past on his way to a superb solo score that wrapped up the victory for the Parisians in the second half.
The score put the Top 14 side two scores ahead, which proved too much of a mountain for the Cherry and Whites to climb.
12. Ryan Crotty (Crusaders)
Ryan Crotty not only helped the Crusaders continue their unbeaten season with a 20-12 win over defending Champions the Hurricanes, but he and his side ensured the visitors did not score a try during the game; the first time that has happened to the Hurricanes in over three years.
"The thing that really impressed me about Ryan Crotty and the Crusaders is that the Hurricanes have scored so many tries this year, and they didn't even really look like scoring a try for most of the game," said Sean Fitzpatrick in the studio after the final whistle.
"For me that's a lot to do with the organisation of the defensive systems, the way that they put the game plan together, and the way they executed it - and a lot of that had to do with Ryan Crotty."
11. Alshaun Bock (Kings)
While Ashton and Saracens were creating history in Europe, the Kings were doing the same in Super Rugby - on Saturday the Eastern Cape side won a local derby against a South African team for the first time since their franchise was introduced to the competition.
The Kings beat the Sharks 35-32 in a pulsating clash in Port Elizabeth, a victory that also set a new record for consecutive victories for the Kings with three - after the South Africans defeated the Waratahs and the Rebels in previous weeks.
Alshaun Bock scored two tries in Saturday's win, beating five players and making 121 metres in his 13 carries at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
10. Owen Farrell (Saracens)
Owen Farrell scored 13 points in the Champions Cup final, bringing down the curtain on a European campaign in which he was the top points scorer with 126, and subsequently awarded the inaugural Anthony Foley Memorial Trophy, the newly-named trophy handed to the EPCR European Player of the Year.
A nod to Lionel Cronje, the Kings fly-half who contributed 20 points to his side's cause against the Sharks, as well as Jules Plisson who was in command in the Challenge Cup final.
9. Will Genia (Stade Francais)
Will Genia controlled things well for the Parisians on Friday, but his most important act was a chip over the opposition defence which brought about Stade's first try in the first half.
The Australian picked up the ball from the base of the ruck inside the opposition 22 and sent the ball up for Hugh Pyle to knock it back to Sergio Parisse who crashed over from short range. When the conversion when over, Stade were level and they kicked on to win the game.
1. Mako Vunipola (Saracens)
Not a great day in the set piece for the British and Irish Lion, but Mako Vunipola more than pulled his weight around the pitch in the loose.
The front rower put in the most tackles of any of his team-mates with 13, and his 16 carries was second to only one player in the Saracens camp - younger brother Billy.
2. Remi Bonfils (Stade Francais)
A tireless individual effort from Remi Bonfils, who made 12 tackles on Friday night as well as forcing one turnover. In the set piece the hooker was successful with 14 out of his 15 throws into the lineout.
There was also an energetic performance from Schalk Brits, who made seven carries and beat three defenders after joining the action as a second-half replacement for Saracens.
3. Davit Zirakashvili (Clermont)
Vincent Koch carried the ball well at Murrayfield, but when it came to the scrum, Davit Zirakashvili was the star of the show on Saturday.
The Georgian kept the ferocious Saracens pack on the back foot at scrum time, which helped keep Clermont in the game right up to the final ten minutes before the champions pulled away.
4. Sebastien Vahaamahina (Clermont)
With five of Saracens' six British and Irish Lions lining up in the pack, the task for Clermont's forwards was always going to be a tough one.
But the Frenchmen more than stood up to the onslaught, dominating some of the physical exchanges which was led by second rower Sebastien Vahaamahina, who put in 10 tackles as well as forcing two turnovers.
5. Patrick Tuipulotu (Blues)
Patrick Tuipulotu scored a try in the Blues' 50-32 win over the Cheetahs at Eden Park over the weekend, a victory that puts the Kiwis one spot off a play-off place with the regular season winding down. Tuipulotu also made seven tackles and seven carries in Auckland.
A mention for George Kruis for his try that looked at the time to have put Clermont out of the final before the French side hit back.
6. Michael Rhodes (Saracens)
There are plenty of superstars in the Saracens team, but they are given the time and space on the ball due to the hard work of players like Michael Rhodes.
The South African made 10 tackles, effecting one turnover against Clermont, but was also the main man in the lineout, taking six throws from the Saracens hookers.
Ross Moriarty was not quite up the same form we saw from him in the Six Nations, but made 11 carries for Gloucester on Friday and scored a try - and like Rhodes was the most employed receiver at the lineout with three takes.
7. Peceli Yato (Clermont)
Saracens struggled to keep up with Peceli Yato all afternoon. The flanker made 12 carries - the third most of his team-mates - and beat five defenders, which was the most by any player in Clermont colours.
It was also the flanker's bursting run down the left touchline, shoving Farrell away with one arm and offloading to Nick Abendanon in the tackle with the other, which brought the Top 14 side to within a point following the conversion.
Stade's Jonathan Ross is unlucky to miss out after making nine carries and 19 tackles against Gloucester.
8. Billy Vunipola (Saracens)
The Edinburgh final was billed as a showdown between two of Europe's toughest No 8s, and though Fritz Lee impressed with 13 carries and 17 carries, it was a head-to-head that Billy Vunipola edged to claim the man of the match award.
The Saracens man put in nine tackles, but it was his work with the ball that gets him in this week. The younger Vunipola carried 21 times - the most out of anyone who played in the game - and beat eight defenders on his way to making 78 metres, which topped the chart for territory made by a Saracen.