Unsurprisingly, four All Blacks have made it to the last four of the fans’ vote for the World Rugby player of the decade. 

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Dan Carter, Beauden Barrett, Richie McCaw and Kieran Read make a list of World Cup winners and World Rugby player of the year winners over the past ten years. 

Carter faces Barrett in the penultimate round of voting after the former fly-half beat Owen Farrell and the Blues-bound ten narrowly edged Ma’a Nonu. 

Both players have been named the player of the year twice this past decade, but Carter has an extra RWC winners medal from 2011 as well as 112 caps and the most points in Test history with 1,598. This will be a close battle between New Zealand’s two great fly-halves this decade. 

The two All Blacks captains over the past ten years, McCaw and Read, also overcame Sergio Parisse and David Pocock respectively, with the No8 shading the Wallabies flanker by the tightest of margins. 

(Continue reading below…)

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The two centurions, McCaw with a Test record 148 caps and Read with 128, both have been named the player of the year once this decade and are dual RWC winners. They will make for another close battle to see who joins Carter or Barrett in the final. 

It is yet to be seen whether the fact that Read and Barrett have played the majority of this decade can make a difference, as Carter and McCaw both retired in 2015, but the latter two are revered as two of the greatest in history. 

Who will win is uncertain but what is clear is the player of the decade will be from New Zealand. 

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