Punters worldwide hit the polls on RugbyPass’ Facebook and Instagram accounts as part of the Straight 8 Fan Vote campaign to decide the best players on the globe in each position, as voted by the fans.
In the first two instalments of the series, England star Mao Itoje defeated South Africa’s Eben Etzebeth to be crowned the world’s best lock, while World Rugby player of the year Pieter-Steph du Toit fought off All Blacks powerhouse Ardie Savea to claim the flanker title.
By virtue of qualifying for a top two spot in their respective positions, all four players have qualified for a place in the RugbyPass Straight 8 Fan Vote World XV, where they will be joined by wing finalists Radradra and Kolbe.
After having easily fended off the challenge of Japan hero Kenki Fukuoka in the first round of the knockout bracket, Radradra was pitted against South African try-scoring machine Makazole Mapimpi in a semi-final clash.
The Sharks speedster’s impressive scoring ratio on the international scene – he’s scored 14 tries in as many tests, including one against England in last year’s World Cup final in Japan – wasn’t enough to hold out the rampant Radradra, though.
Instead, the barnstorming Bordeaux rugby league convert ran away with the tie, accumulating an impressive 72 percent of the vote count to land himself a place in the final.
There he will face 2019 World Rugby player of the year nominee Cheslin Kolbe, who had dominated Welsh wing Josh Adams in the quarter-final stage to reach the second round.
The 1.70m, 77kg pocket rocket was matched up against England’s Jonny May, who joined Mapimpi in dispatching All Blackspair Rieko Ioane and Sevu Reece in the first round of the bracket.
May didn’t have such luck in the next stage of voting, though, as the Leicester Tigers wing was thumped by Toulouse’s Kolbe, who accrued 69 percent of the public’s approval.
It leaves the World Cup winner – who last year added a Top 14 title and Top 14 player of the year accolade to his 2016 Rio Olympics bronze medal and three Currie Cup triumphs with Western Province – up against Radradra in the final round.