Sport

World Rugby shortlist for Players of the Year award

Israel Folau's stellar season for the Wallabies didn't go unnoticed, with the fullback being the sole Australian nominated for the World Rugby Player of the Year award.

She is nominated alongside Kelly Brazier (New Zealand), Portia Woodman (New Zealand), Romane Menager (France) and Safi N'Diaye (France).

Who will be crowned World Player of the Year?

The new selection process will see fans, global captains, coaches and media have their say before the panel considers the victor of the prestigious award.

In addition to helping Saracens win the Champions Cup in 2017, with Farrell scoring 126 points, both assisted in England's second successive Six Nations title earlier this year and were part of the British & Irish Lions squad who drew their Test series with world champions New Zealand in the summer.

"I am sure there will be lots of debate over the coming weeks. I'd like to thank the panel for their expert consideration and look forward to the winners being announced at the World Rugby Awards in Monaco". The 26-year-old finished the Lions series as top points-scorer with 41.

Itoje was named 2016 Breakthrough Player of the Year and will be hoping to land the big prize this time around.

The other nominees for the top accolade are Beauden Barrett (New Zealand), Owen Farrell (England and the British & Irish Lions), Rieko Ioane (New Zealand) and Maro Itoje (England and the British & Irish Lions).

The dual-code worldwide took out his third John Eales Medal (most ever) for Australian player of the year in 2017, and also broke fellow rugby league convert Lote Tuqiri's record for most Test tries in a calendar year by an Australian.



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