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'Feels really rough': The All Black 'robbed' of world's best nomination

By Finn Morton
(Photo by Joe Giddens/PA Images via Getty Images)

World Rugby have announced the four nominees for Mens 15s Player of the Year, but the glaring omission of an All Blacks star has stumped fans on Twitter.


French captain Antoine Dupont could potentially become just the third player to win the award in back-to-back years – and the first player to do so who isn’t an All Black.

The other three nominees are South Africa’s Lukhanyo Am, and Ireland duo Johnny Sexton and Josh van der Flier.

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Sexton became the first Irishman to win the award since Keith Wood in 2001 when he was crowned the world’s best in 2018.

But rugby fans around the world have simply been left in shock after finding out All Blacks backrower Ardie Savea missed out on a nomination the award, with some calling him the world’s best forward.

While the All Blacks have had an up and down Test season, which has included historic losses at home to both Ireland and Argentina, Savea has consistently stood out for the men in black.

As reported last week, six-time Super Rugby champion Bryn Hall believed the All Black had to be “in the conversation” for the award – with former Blues captain James Parsons agreeing that it was “a no brainer.”


Many rugby fans on social media have echoed those comments, as they shared their own thoughts about why Savea “should be Player of the Year.”


While the All Blacks began their international season with a historic series loss in New Zealand against Ireland, the men in black are now on a six-Test unbeaten streak.

After beating Wales by an emphatic score in Cardiff over a week ago, the All Blacks came from behind to earn a hard-fought 31-23 win over Scotland just over a day ago.

The All Blacks have one more Test match to play this year, and it’s a blockbuster against England at Twickenham.

The World Rugby Awards is set to return to a physical format for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, and will be held in Monaco this weekend.

Rugby fans are encouraged to cast their votes on social media and select who they believed scored the International Rugby Players Men’s and Women’s tries of the year until Thursday, 17 November at 23:59 GMT.

World Rugby Chairman Sir Bill Beaumont has congratulated everyone who has been nominated for an award, as he looks ahead to hosting “the global rugby family.”

“The World Rugby Awards are the ultimate accolades for rugby, and we are delighted to honour the outstanding players and individuals who have made an impact on our game on and off the field in 2022,” Beaumont said.

“On behalf of World Rugby, I would like to congratulate all nominees of the 22nd edition for their incredible achievements over the past calendar year. Not only have they showcased tremendous rugby skills, but they have also inspired millions of fans around the world helping spread the values of our sport.

“I am looking forward to host the global rugby family next Sunday under the high patronage of HSH Princess Charlene of Monaco and the Principality for a night of celebration in Monte-Carlo.”


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