There have been a number of players in the Aviva Premiership who despite being involved in many, many games simply cannot score tries. We take a look at the individuals with the worst dry spells in terms of try-scoring.
As a prop myself, this writer knows how rarely the slowest players on the pitch score and how special each prop try is. Therefore it’s not surprising that so many Premiership props just do not score. Here are a few infamous examples:
- So far Exeter Chiefs’ Ben Moon has gone 109 matches so far without scoring a try (between 2010 and 2016).
- Saracens’ Petrus du Plessis has so far played 91 matches without crossing the line once.
- Kris Fullman of Bristol, London Irish and Leeds also went 91 games without scoring between 1997 and 2005.
- The much-vaunted young Sale Sharks prop Ross Harrison has now spent 85 games without getting a 5-pointer.
- Tom Mercey, Cobus Visagie and Phil Swainston also all feature in the top ten dry spells in the Premiership.
It’s time us props sorted ourselves out and started taking the ball back from the greedy wingers.
Former Newcastle and Northampton second row Mark Sorenson has the worst dry spell in Premiership history. He went 127 matches between 2006-2013 without scoring. Sorenson did actually score one try in the 2013-2014 Championship season for Bristol, and he’ll be hoping to be given a chance to score with them in the Premiership this year.
England’s South African-born lock Mouritz Botha has so far gone 109 matches between 2009-2016 for both Saracens and Newcastle without scoring.
Former Saracens and Harlequins lock Alex Codling, who earnt himself a solitary cap for England, went for 78 matches without a try.
Bristol’s Nathan Budgett played 51 games in the Premiership for his club between 2006 and 2009, but never once scored a try in that time.
Although primarily locks, both Bristol’s Scott Morgan and Bath, Wasps and London Welsh’s Martin Purdy also spent time in the back row. Morgan did not score in 73 games, Purdy in 51.
Former Exeter Chiefs, London Irish and Saracens number nine Kevin Barrett did not score for his clubs between 1999 and 2013, over 52 games – although he only started just five of those matches.
Newcastle’s Chris Pilgrim also failed to score over 40 games for his club between 2009 and 2014.
Rory Clegg, who has played for a number of teams within the Premiership across a seven-year period, played 65 Premiership games without scoring a try.
There aren’t many players here, but centre Andy Northey who played for both Northampton and Rotherham, went 59 games between 1997 and 2001 completely tryless.
Springbok fly-half and centre Braam van Straaten – who scored two tries in 21 tests – started 44 games for Sale and Leeds without scoring a try.
Paul Wassell, Pundit Arena
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