There are four very different options to consider before you cast your vote for the best flyhalf in world rugby in 2011. Which playmaker has the goods to make it into the Rugby Rugby readers' Team of the year?
Flyhalf is widely regarded as one of the most important positions in a rugby team as the type of player selected in that position will often dictate the team's approach. The pivot sets the tone and is tasked with making many of the important on-field decisions, so it is not a selection that should be taken lightly.
So which No.10 would you pick ahead of all the others? Make your voice heard by leaving your vote and analysis at the bottom of the page to ensure that whoever cracks the nod for the readers' XV is able to match up to the official Rugby Rugby Team of the Year when it is eventually revealed.
Two flyhalves from each hemisphere make up the options and all four have something slightly different to offer which should make for some heated banter in our comments section, so get your two cents in and state your case!
Our Super Rugby flyhalf of the tournament was mercurial Queensland Reds playmaker Quade Cooper who set the competition alight with his dazzling footwork and attacking genius.
While he may not be the most popular guy in New Zealand - the land of his birth - thanks to his run-ins with All Blacks leader Richie McCaw, there is no denying the fact that he has the ability to create something out of nothing and win matches for his team.
Cooper's defence is an obvious weak point, and both the Reds and the Wallabies have taken to "hiding" him in the back three when the opposition have possession, with more competent tacklers such as wing Digby Ioane stepping in to defend his channel.
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Some will argue that this is done to make the most of his counter-attacking ability as he is an extremely elusive runner who manages to slip his way out of his fair share of tackles, while his skilful passing game is able to flourish in all the space at the back.
Despite his outstanding form in the Reds' march to Super Rugby glory Cooper was shown to be fallible in a disappointing World Cup campaign. He was put under pressure consistently by the opposition, while the constant boos from the crowd would not have done much for his flagging confidence either.
Our Six Nations flyhalf was England pivot Toby Flood who guided his team to the title but found himself watching most of the World Cup from the sidelines as manager Martin Johnson put all his faith in his 2003 World Cup-winning teammate Jonny Wilkinson.
Flood impressed when he got the chance at the global showpiece in New Zealand, with the Leicester Tigers man often sparking his side on attack by showing some impressive vision.
All Blacks legend Dan Carter was our flyhalf of the Tri-Nations after a series of top performances that highlighted his all-round class. Carter completely outplayed Cooper in the crunch Bledisloe Cup match in Auckland where he showcased the incredible composure that has made him famous.
Carter does not have any obvious weaknesses to his game, which would seem to make him a better bet than his Wallabies rival, but he did spend a large portion of the season on the sidelines with injuries in Super Rugby and the World Cup curtailing his involvement in both tournaments.
His groin injury at the World Cup sent a shockwave through New Zealand which underlined just how vital he is to the All Blacks' game.
With Cooper enduring a World Cup flop and Carter nursing his wounded groin young Welshman Rhys Priestland emerged as a dark horse to be named as the flyhalf of the tournament.
Having previously played most of his rugby at fullback eyebrows were raised when coach Warren Gatland named him in his team to face the Springboks in their first game but Priestland delivered the goods throughout the tournament until he too was struck down by injury in the final stages of his team's quarterfinal victory over Ireland.
The Scarlets pivot has the ability to release his backline and is also a good tactical kicker which makes him a more rounded prospect for Wales than the vastly experienced Stephen Jones.
He emerged as just one of the exciting young players that Gatland backed at the World Cup to stand up and prove that the Kiwi coach's faith in them was entirely warranted and he looks set to enjoy a long and successful international career.
So which of these four stood out for you? Was it the enigmatic Cooper who stole the Super Rugby show and then faded at the World Cup? Perhaps you will go with New Zealand great Carter who impressed enough with the limited opportunities he had.
You could go for Flood who looked sharp all year but could not break into the England side in New Zealand, or maybe you will go for the young bolter Priestland who guided Wales to their second World Cup semifinal. Leave your vote below!
There is still time to cast your vote for the best:
15: Fullback - (Israel Dagg, Kurtley Beale, Andrea Masi)
14: Right wing - (James O'Connor, Chris Ashton, Rod Davies)
13: Outside centre - (Brian O'Driscoll, Jaque Fourie, Conrad Smith)
12: Inside centre - (Sonny Bill Williams, Ma'a Nonu, Jamie Roberts, Jonathan Davies)
11: Left wing - (Digby Ioane, Shane Williams)
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