Rugby Championship: The nine individual stat leaders at the end of the competition

Rugby Championship stats leaders image 2023.jpg Credit: Alamy

Rugby Championship stats leaders image 2023.jpg Credit: Alamy

Now that the Rugby Championship has drawn to a close, Planet Rugby takes a look at the individual stat leaders from the action in the southern hemisphere tournament.

New Zealand were crowned champions after winning all three of their matches while South Africa finished as runners-up with Argentina settling for third position while Australia were wooden spoonists.

There were 44 tries scored over the three rounds, with a total of 228 points amassed during the truncated competition.

Rugby Championship stat leaders

Tries: Kurt-Lee Arendse (3)

The Springbok flyer was at the top of the charts in this section from start to finish after crossing for a hat-trick of tries in his side’s 43-12 victory over the Wallabies in Pretoria in Round One.

Several players were next best with the All Blacks quartet of Aaron Smith, Shannon Frizell, Rieko Ioane and Will Jordan as well as Los Pumas’ Mateo Carreras all crossing for two tries.

Points: Richie Mo’unga (28)

The All Blacks fly-half finishes at the top of the charts with 28 points amassed from three matches played, despite failing to trouble the scorers in his team’s opener against Argentina when he came on as a late replacement.

The bulk of Mo’unga’s points (20) came in his side’s 35-20 win over South Africa in Round Two when he scored a try and kicked three conversions and as many penalties. Springbok playmaker Manie Libbok was next best, seven points adrift of Mo’unga, while Argentina full-back Emiliano Boffelli finished third with 16 points scored.

Tackles: Rob Valetini (53)

Bottom-placed finishers the Wallabies spent long periods defending during the Rugby Championship and it’s not surprising that their players dominate this aspect of the game.

Valetini finishes in first place with a whopping 53 hits completed in three Tests played while his team-mates Dave Porecki and Allan Alaalatoa are in second and third positions after completing 45 and 39 tackles respectively.

Carries made: Pablo Matera (44)

The Los Pumas flanker was consistent in this category throughout the tournament and in Saturday’s encounter against the Springboks he was once again amongst the leading ball carriers in his team with 12 carries completed, with only Tomas Lavanini (14) making more than him.

All Blacks counterpart Ardie Savea finished in second position with 41 carries – after completing a round-high 19 carries in the final round – while Argentina fly-half Santiago Carreras was next best with 37 made.

Most clean breaks: Will Jordan (7)

This category was hotly contested throughout the competition as several players were in the running to finish in first place ahead of the final round, but in the end it’s Jordan who finishes on top with seven clean breaks after completing three in Melbourne on Saturday.

Fellow All Blacks flyer Mark Telea was also full of running throughout the competition but eventually finished in second place (6) while the Wallabies’ Marika Koroibete was third with four.

Defenders beaten: Mark Telea and Marika Koroibete (11)

Coming into the final round of matches, Koroibete was leading the pack in this department but he had an off day in his side’s defeat to the All Blacks on Saturday and couldn’t add to his tally.

By contrast, Telea had only beaten two defenders in his previous appearance – against the Springboks in Auckland in Round Two – in the tournament but had a field day against the Wallabies as he beat a whopping nine opponents to draw level with Koroibete.

Argentina flyer Mateo Carreras finished third with 10 defenders beaten.

Running metres: Marika Koroibete (281)

Despite beating no defenders in the final round, Koroibete still did his bit on attack as he ran distance of 84 metres against the All Blacks, which meant he finished with the most metres gained in the tournament.

Telea’s excellent attacking statistics continued as he eventually finished in second position in this section as well with 242 running metres while fellow All Black Beauden Barrett (220) was third.

Lineouts won: Juan Martín González (15)

The Los Pumas back-row was the leading lineout exponent after two rounds and continued to shine in this category as he eventually finished in top spot after winning three balls at the set-piece in his side’s 22-21 loss to the Springboks in Johannesburg in Round Three.

In the end, González was a comfortable winner as he finished with six more takes than All Blacks second-row Scott Barrett while the Wallabies’ Nick Frost was third after winning eight lineout balls during the tournament.

Offloads: Multiple players (4)

Matera came into the final round’s action sitting pretty after making four offloads during the two earlier games but he could not add to his tally in Argentina’s loss against South Africa.

Meanwhile, the Wallabies’ Will Skelton, Mark Nawaqanitawase and Jordie Barrett and Jordan of the All Blacks managed some offloads in their clash in Melbourne to equal Matera’s tally.

READ MORE: Rugby Championship: Two Cents Rugby picks his top five players from Round Three

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