Team of the week: Domestic semi-finalists and Super Rugby stars
By Louise Warr and Emma Thurston
Last Updated: 22/05/17 1:24pm
Domestic semi-finalists meet the best of the southern hemisphere in our team of the week.
15. Lwazi Mvovo (Sharks)
In Singapore the Sharks stuttered slightly in the second half but ultimately secured the victory over the Sunwolves and Lwazi Mvovo was a key factor in their win.
Mvovo notched up a hat-trick of tries and was excellent under the high ball at full-back. He delivered 152 metres off 11 carries and showcased a full complement of tricks away from home.
A mention for RC Toulon's Leigh Halfpenny as he scored 21 of their 26 points against Castres.
It's been an eventful season for the French side but they showed all of their experience to navigate their way through the barrage and book a meeting with La Rochelle in Marseille.
Halfpenny won't take part in the final if Toulon get there due to his British and Irish Lions commitments but he'll be vital next week and showed once again why Warren Gatland wants him in New Zealand
14. Liam Williams (Scarlets)
Liam Williams ensured his Scarlets' career is extended by a week with a stand-out performance against Leinster on Friday evening.
Saracens-bound Williams kicked two penalties late into the match to ensure his side booked their place in the Guinness PRO12 final but it was his try-saving work in defence that has earned him a place in our team of the week.
With Leinster looking dangerous 20 minutes into the game, Williams teamed up with Steff Evans to save an almost certain try for the hosts. Evans tackled a motoring Luke McGrath while Williams' poaching skills on the floor won the ball back for his side just inches away from his own line.
A crucial intervention from the winger who was prepared to put his body on the line and risk a penalty to keep his line intact.
13. Vince Aso (Hurricanes)
At the Westpac Stadium the Hurricanes destroyed the Cheetahs 61-7 and centre Vince Aso enjoyed himself.
Aso scored a hat-trick of tries which pushed his tally to 13 in 11 matches. As a result, he now holds the Hurricanes' single-season try-scoring record which was previously set by Tana Umaga.
As part of a side that dominated in all areas, the centre made 137 metres in total and the Canes head on the road with no injuries and a spring in their step.
12. Jimmy Gopperth (Wasps)
Jimmy Gopperth once again proved why he was the king in this season's awards ceremonies with another influential performance at inside centre as Wasps edged past Leicester.
The Kiwi has already capped a fine season by being named the Aviva Premiership, Rugby Players' Association and Wasps' player of the season and continued to steal the show as he set up a date with Exeter in Saturday's final.
Gopperth put in 10 carries for his side making an impressive 71 metres, making him his side's second best metre maker behind No 8 Nathan Hughes. Ever the asset with the boot, he also combined with winger Willie le Roux to send Josh Bassett over in the corner for the match-winning score.
11. Joe Rockoko (Racing 92)
Joe Rokocoko scored the decisive try as defending Top 14 champions Racing 92 beat Montpellier 22-13 to set up a semi-final clash with Clermont in Marseille next weekend.
Rokocoko used all his strength to cross in the corner five minutes from time while also contributing throughout the match in attack making 70 metres from his 16 carries.
10. Freddie Burns (Leicester)
Freddie Burns may have been on the wrong side of the result at the Ricoh Arena but his individual performance earns him a place in our team of the week.
The fly-half continued to show Bath fans what they'll be getting next season as he was sharp off the tee and led Leicester around the park with distinction.
The 27-year-old has matured into an assured stand-off that controls games with assurance and one that has the stardust to create something out of nothing.
A notable mention must also be made for Exeter's Henry Slade. His outstanding accuracy ensured that the Chiefs were in the right position to set up the drive for their match-winning try and he even received praise from Saracens boss Mark McCall.
"We had the game with two minutes left, but then came one of the great kicks of all time from Henry Slade," McCall said post match.
"He puts that kick anywhere else, and I would be sitting here talking about one of the great wins and fights from a team who were a bit tired."
9. Maxime Machenaud (Racing 92)
Maxime Machenaud is the man to take the scrum-half spot thanks to a first-class defensive effort against Montpellier.
The 28-year-old was his side's top tackler as they ran out 13-22 winners over Jake White's Montpellier while he was an integral cog in Teddy Thomas' try in the 24th minute, his speculative chip ahead landing for Yannick Nyanga who released the winger to put the Parisians back ahead.
1. Aki Seiuli (Highlanders)
The Highlanders put the Western Force to the sword with a powerhouse 55-6 win in Perth.
The New Zealanders made it eight straight wins, and nine from 12 matches overall this season, by running in eight unanswered tries as they push towards the play-offs, two of those tries coming from loosehead prop Aki Seiuli.
A late inclusion to the starting XV, Seiuli helped the Highlanders tighten their grip on the game in the 36th minute when he intercepted close to the line and dived over before adding another shortly after the break.
2. Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter)
Facing off against British and Irish Lions tourist Jamie George, Luke Cowan-Dickie more than held his own against the Saracens man.
He epitomised everything that was good about the Chiefs as they conquered the European champions, providing his side with a rock-solid scrum and lineout platform to build their dangerous attacking play from.
However, this was also an area where Cowan-Dickie excelled, he made 15 carries for his side, getting his side on the front foot at every turn, while making 21 metres of his own.
An impressive performance from the hooker who will be looking to continue his form into the final and beyond as he tours Argentina with England this summer.
3. Dan Cole (Leicester)
While Wasps may have booked their place in the Premiership's showpiece event next weekend, they will be far from happy with their performance in the scrum against the Tigers.
Dan Cole tormented opposite number Matt Mullan in the set piece and many are highlighting his exit from the field in the 65th minute as the turning point in the close-fought encounter. Wasps gaining the ascendancy in his absence, winning a scrum penalty which set them up for the late surge.
As well as his work in the scrum, Cole put in eight tackles for his side whilst also winning two turnovers in the process.
4. Donnacha Ryan (Munster)
Donnacha Ryan bid farewell to Thomond Park with a huge performance that exemplified his commitment to and affection for the province.
In his final home game the 33-year-old rolled back the years by making 24 tackles and missing none.
"It means everything," said Ryan after the game.
Munster's spark arrived from Simon Zebo and the also departing Francais Saili but, as ever, Ryan and the pack set the platform.
A final at the AvivaStadium awaits and only the Scarlets stand in Munster's way of finishing an unimaginably difficult season with the trophy.
5. Joe Lauchbury (Wasps)
The Wasps captain may have worn four at the weekend but for the purposes of this partnership he's shifting to five to take a deserved place in our team of the week.
The 26-year-old hasn't let the disappointment of being left out of the Lions squd derail his performances. Instead he continues to lead Wasps with distinction and showcase what an outstanding athlete he is.
Launchbury's proficiency at the lineout combines with his athleticism around the park and when a there's even just a hint of a break he charges upfield and puts Wasps on the front foot.
Alongside his physical attributes, the leadership that the lock delivers is vital and Wasps now have to grasp their final opportunity with both hands.
6. Yannick Nyanga (Racing 92)
Flanker Yannick Nyanga put in an influential performance at the Altrad Stadium as Racing 92 saw off Montpellier.
Racing's outstanding flanker was denied an early try after a wonderful one-handed offload from Fijian giant Leone Nakarawa before having his hand in Teddy Thomas' score, collecting Machenaud's chip ahead to send the winger over.
In defence, he was second in the Parisian's top-tackling list with 10, three behind scrum-half Maxime Machenaud.
7. James Davies (Scarlets)
If you are going to deliver the first away semi-final win in a competition's history then you might as well do it against the odds and that's exactly what Scarlets did at the RDS.
Steff Evans' red card put them in the most challenging of situations and yet they rose to the occasion and at the heart of their performance was James Davies.
The flanker almost broke social media with his head-turning man-of-the-match performance and the fact that he's been left out by Wales for their summer tour.
The 26-year-old's dynamism and physicality drove the Scarlets, he was a constant threat in the loose, set up a try and even covered on the wing. It was another tremendous performance.
8. Billy Vunipola (Saracens)
Saracens may have lost their semi-final against Exeter but there were some truly colossal performances in the face of defeat and Billy Vunipola's was one.
The No 8 made 19 carries and 21 tackles, a try-saving turnover in the shadows of his own posts and from minute one to minute 80 set the intensity with which the visitors attacked the semi-final.
The big No 8's stats have proved even more impressive given the news that he has been managing a shoulder injury which will now keep him out of the British and Irish Lions tour, a heartbreaking blow for the man who has been a stand-out performer on the world stage in recent times.
Speaking of the injury, Will Greenwood told Sky Sports News HQ: "For young Billy, it's a huge blow.
"The pinnacle for any northern hemisphere player is to get the opportunity to pull on the red jersey as a Lion.
"It's not only personal disappointment it's collective disappointment as Billy was nominated World Player of the Year last year
"He was also at the heart of Eddie Jones's charge to an 18-match unbeaten run, a Grand Slam, three Tests in Australia."