Top 30 Moments: Benetton’s Key Strength

Michael O'Donnell
05 July 2019

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It may be the more obvious option to choose the names of Tommaso Allan, Monty Ioane and Iliesa Ratuva as the key strengths of the Benetton Rugby Team but in actual fact, it is the man behind the backline that is the real key strength.

The man in question is of course Kieran Crowley, the former All Black now living his life in Italy and building one of the most exciting teams to watch in the Guinness PRO14. His former position as an AB was at full back, a position that undoubtedly lends to his ability to get the most out of his backline. To that, Benetton topped the offload list with 236 this season, carried for 2787 metres and beat 431 defenders. More than respectable numbers.

 

 

The magic elixir behind Crowley and Benetton’s success? It is a lot down to the freedom and time he has been given by the Benetton Directorship to build a culture and to recruit smart. You can listen more to his journey in the Under the Sticks podcast.

 

 

The fruits of Crowley’s labour came this season in the form of on field success bringing Benetton the Guinness PRO14 Final Series, a first for an Italian side. Off the field, he was ceremoniously recognised by his peers in being awarded Coach of the Year at the annual season end awards. His players too found recognition off the field where a total of 6 Benetton players were nominated to the Guinness PRO14 Dream Team. Winger, Monty Ioane made that dream team for his heroics.

Plenty to admire from Crowley and Benetton, plenty more to come too!

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