Lions XV

Sky Sports rugby union writer Tony Curtis names his Lions line-up based on the opening weekend in the RBS Six Nations

By Tony Curtis - Follow me on Twitter: @SkysportsTC.   Last Updated: 04/02/13 11:49am

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The RBS Six Nations got off to a rip-roaring start with three memorable games - and with the lure of the British and Irish Lions tour in the summer who can blame the players from the Home Unions for raising the bar.

Lions head coach Warren Gatland will have been an interested observer of Saturday's games at the Millennium Stadium and Twickenham - although the form of Wales will have perturbed him.

A number of players put their hands up for selection for the tour - and although there is still a long way to go skysports.com names its Lions XV based on the weekend's games.

15 Stuart Hogg (Scotland)

The Scotland full-back attacked with vim and vigour and gave England a torrid time. Got slightly lucky with his try - where he almost shinned the ball out - but it was well deserved for all his efforts.

14 Chris Ashton (England)

The 25-year-old has got his swagger back and took his try - his 17th for England - well. He went searching for the ball throughout and got stuck in.

13 Brian O'Driscoll (Ireland)

The Irishman was clearly hurt at losing the captaincy but he took his anger out on the Welsh. He scored one of the easiest tries of his career and showed sublime hands for Simon Zebo's score.

12 Billy Twelvetrees (England)

A try-scoring debut for the young centre will have given Stuart Lancaster a selection headache. Twelvetrees ran hard at the Scotland defence and slotted in as the second receiver with ease.

11 Simon Zebo (Ireland)

All the attention might have been on wing partner Craig Gilroy however it is the Munster man that stole the show. A try and then a simply amazing piece of skill - seeing him dubbed a 'freak' by Quade Cooper - will have increased his stock.

10 Owen Farrell (England)

The 21-year-old seems to get better and better each time he plays. There have never been any doubts over his kicking but he silenced those that have questioned his attacking abilities by carving open the Scots, including a scintillating pass for Geoff Parling's try.

9 Ben Youngs (England)

The Leicester man has risen to the challenge emanating from Danny Care. His passing had a certain zip about it - with an absolute peach for Twelvetrees to score - while he was always looking for a gap in the Scotland defence.

1 Cian Healy (Ireland)

Helped take apart the all British and Irish Lions Welsh front-row in the scrums in Cardiff. His work rate around the park was second-to-none while he crossed for his second Test try.

2 Rory Best (Ireland)

Was simply awesome in Cardiff and was seemingly everywhere. The sin-binning will have blotted his copybook but he did his best to make amends with some big hits in defence.

3 Dan Cole (England)

It is hard to believe that Cole is just 25, however he has emerged as one of the world's top tighthead props. Superb in the scrum and pilfers better than a lot of back-rows.

4 Andrew Coombs (Wales)

Another player who had a debut to remember, the Dragons lock took his chance - as well as plenty of lineout ball - with both hands. He made the hard yards with the ball in hand as well to make light of Wales' second row woes.

5 Mike McCarthy (Ireland)

The Connacht second row was a solid brick in the Irish defence as Wales threw everything at Ireland in the second half. He tackled himself to a standstill and is staking a serious claim to be involved with the Lions.

6 Tom Wood (England)

Wood is arguably England's best No 6 since Richard Hill. Covered every blade of grass at Twickenham and got stuck in on the deck to disrupt Scotland's hopes.

7 Sean O'Brien (Ireland)

The Leinster man completely outclassed opposite number Sam Warburton at the Millennium Stadium. He made the hard yards with the ball in hand while his defensive efforts were heroic.

8 Toby Faletau (Wales)

The powerhouse No 8 was one of the few Welsh players to emerge from Cardiff with his reputation intact. Was a constant threat going forward.

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