Player of the Year nominations: Major omissions
REACTION: World Rugby has announced the shortlist of players for the 2019 Player of the Year award and there are some major omissions.
The nominees for the award are: Pieter-Steph du Toit (South Africa), Tom Curry (England), Alun Wyn Jones (Wales), Cheslin Kolbe (South Africa), Ardie Savea (New Zealand) and Joe Taufete’e (USA).
Owen Farrell and Maro Itoje, arguably England’s two best performing players this year, have both failed to receive nominations and will have to be content with a potential Team of the Year award.
— rugby365.com (@rugby365com) November 1, 2019
There are also no candidates on the shortlist from Japan, who have had a landmark year. Their outside backs and loose forwards, in particular, all had outstanding World Cups.
On the other side of the coin, Taufete’e’s deserved nomination is a sign that tier-two teams aren’t getting snubbed,
The nominees were decided by who’s who of former players, including Richie McCaw, John Smit, George Gregan, Maggie Alphonsi, Melodie Robinson, Fiona Coghlan, Brian O’Driscoll, Fabien Galthié, Agustín Pichot and Seilala Mapusua.
International players have also had the opportunity to vote to determine the nominees of the prestigious awards.
World Rugby Chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said: “The World Rugby Men’s and Women’s 15s Player of the Year awards are the ultimate accolade for test players and this year there have been an exceptional number of outstanding candidates. I would like to congratulate all 11 players who, deservingly, have been nominated for this year’s award.”