Manu Tuilagi’s hit of the season was so huge it bizarrely became illegal
Most tackles that Manu Tuilagi makes are fairly big, so when he is awarded the hit of the season you know the tackle was brutal even for his own standards.
The centre was handed the Sale Sharks hit of the season recently for a tackle made last September and it is hard to argue with the decision.
Bath’s 107kg flanker Wesley White was the unlucky recipient of the tackle, though he probably had a bone to pick with the teammate that threw him a hospital pass in the first place. No sooner had he reached in the air to grab the floating pass than the 110kg England international was about a centimetre away having had a ten metre run up.
The tackle was actually so powerful that White immediately flew back about two metres upon making contact with Tuilagi’s right shoulder before crashing to the ground. That did make Tuilagi’s tackle illegal in a way because he did not wrap his arms, but he could hardly be blamed for that as he had no time to do so.
This was right at the beginning of a season where Tuilagi steadily improved to the point where he was looking near his best come the end as Sale make the Gallagher Premiership final. In fact, Sale director of rugby Alex Sanderson said after the final loss that the 2013 British & Irish Lion is now at his best after a two year plan to get him ready for the World Cup, which begins later this year.
“Manu’s playing his best rugby,” said Sanderson. “He’s at his most robust.
“We said this was the aim two-and-a-half years ago for him to be playing his best rugby going into the World Cup and we’ve achieved that.”
Take a look at Tuilagi’s hit of the season:
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