Keith Earls has been included in former Springboks centre Jaco Taute’s dream team of those he played with and against during his career.
Taute won three caps for the Springboks in 2012, the last of which came against Ireland in Dublin where he lined up opposite Earls at outside centre.
The South African became much more well acquainted with Earls while the two played together for Munster however, and the Moyross man clearly made a very positive impact on Taute.
Earls is the one Irish player Taute included in his dream team for SA Rugby Magazine, which also included players from South Africa, New Zealand and England.
The South African spent three seasons with Keith Earls at Munster.
On Earls, Taute wrote that the Munster stalwart is a “brilliant finisher, with exceptional work rate both on attack and defence.”
Taute originally joined Munster on a four-month contract in September 2016 as an injury replacement for Francis Saili, although he ended up spending three seasons with the province after a number of impressive performances.
Before joining Munster, Taute played for the Lions and Stormers in Super Rugby and joined Leicester Tigers in the Gallagher Premiership when his time in Limerick came to an end.
In his three caps for the Springboks, Taute faced Australia, New Zealand and Ireland, and despite starting all of those games, he made his last appearance for his country when he was just 21.
Now 31 years old, Taute was forced to announce his retirement from professional rugby last month after failing to recover from a recurring knee injury.
Taute clearly remembers his time with Munster very fondly, as he wrote in his retirement announcement, “I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to live in Limerick and Leicester and play the sport I love.”
— Jaco Taute (@JacoTaute) July 1, 2022
Jaco Taute’s dream team.
15. Ben Smith (New Zealand)
14. Keith Earls (Ireland)
13. Conrad Smith (New Zealand)
12. Jean de Villiers (South Africa)
11. Bryan Habana (South Africa)
10. Dan Carter (New Zealand)
9. Ben Youngs (England)
8. Duane Vermeulen (South Africa)
7. Michael Rhodes (South Africa)
6. Schalk Burger (South Africa)
5. Victor Matfield (South Africa)
4. Eben Etzebeth (South Africa)
3. Frans Malherbe (South Africa)
2. Bismarck du Plessis (South Africa)
1. Ellis Genge (England)