Salford Red Devils back-rower Ben Murdoch-Masila has been named in the 2017 Super League Dream Team.
The Tongan forward has crossed for 14 Super League tries this season and was the form forward in the league in a run which saw Salford win 12 out of 13 games on the run in all competitions.
Murdoch-Masila becomes the first Red Devil to appear in the Super League Dream Team since David Hodgson back in 2006.
Murdoch-Masila said: “It was a massive surprise for me to be selected but I am delighted with being named in the team.
“There’s some really good players been named in this side and to be amongst them means a lot to me.
“We’ve had a real good season this year particularly if you look back to where we were at last season. Of course, we’d have liked to have kicked on and pushed a little more in the Super 8s but we’re heading in the right direction.
“I’ve just done my bit for the side throughout the season and scored a few tries. Now, I’m looking forward to a bit off and spending some time with my family who have been supportive of me since I first arrived at Salford.”
Seven Super League clubs are represented in this year’s team with League Leaders’ Shield winners Castleford Tigers (6) dominating the selection along with Hull FC (2), Huddersfield Giants (1), St Helens (1), Leeds Rhinos (1), Salford Red Devils (1) and Wigan Warriors (1).
The 2017 Dream Team features eight players making their debut, including Huddersfield Giants’ Sebastine Ikahihifo, St Helens’ centre Mark Percival and Leeds Rhinos hooker Matt Parcell, who makes his debut in his first year in Super League.
Wigan Warriors and England Captain Sean O’Loughlin makes his sixth Dream Team appearance – his last appearance was in 2014.
All three players shortlisted for the prestigious Steve Prescott Man of Steel award: Albert Kelly, Zak Hardaker and Luke Gale are included.
Joining Hardaker and Gale from Castleford Tigers, who have the most representatives in the Dream Team, are centre Michael Shenton and debutants Greg Eden, Grant Millington and Mike McMeeken.
Ladbrokes Challenge Cup winners Hull FC have two representatives in the Dream Team – Albert Kelly, who features for the first time and Mahe Fonua, who appears for the second consecutive year. The Betfred Super League Dream Team is selected by a panel of the sport’s broadcasters and journalists in a secret ballot and represents the form team of the Betfred Super League season.
The 2017 Betfred Super League Dream Team is as follows:
- Zak Hardaker (Castleford Tigers) Dream Team appearances: 3 (2014, 2015, 2017)
- Greg Eden (Castleford Tigers) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Michael Shenton (Castleford Tigers) Dream Team appearances: 3 (2014, 2015, 2017)
- Mark Percival (St Helens) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Mahe Fonua (Hull FC) Dream Team appearances: 2 (2016, 2017)
- Albert Kelly (Hull FC) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Luke Gale (Castleford Tigers) Dream Team appearances: 3 (2015, 2016, 2017)
- Grant Millington (Castleford Tigers) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Matt Parcell (Leeds Rhinos) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Sebastine Ikahihifo (Huddersfield Giants) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Ben Murdoch-Masila (Salford Red Devils) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Mike McMeeken (Castleford Tigers) Dream Team appearances: 1 (2017)
- Sean O’Loughlin (Wigan Warriors) Dream Team appearances: 6 (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017)