A Post-World Cup year is always a time of change in rugby. After the glitz and glamour of its most celebrated tournament, the world becomes grounded as the sport sets off once again on its next four-year cycle.
There are plenty who despise of this mentality, including yours truly. But it is the way of the world in this era of professional sports.
Nevertheless, 2012 has been a season to remember. Plenty of good rugby was played as a new bunch of youngsters strutted their stuff alongside the stars of the game in the first steps towards World Cup glory in 2015.
This article looks at the very best of the year. The best players, teams, coaches, tries, hits and so much more.