Ireland have won another battle against the All Blacks – this time off the field after claiming all three major prizes for the men’s 15s game at the World Rugby awards in Monte Carlo this morning.
Just over a week after their 16-9 win over the world champions in Dublin, Ireland claimed the team, coach, and player of the year awards at this morning’s event.
Ireland pipped the All Blacks in the team category after completing a grand slam on their way to winning the Six Nations this year. They also managed to beat the Kiwi side for the second time.
Kiwi coach Joe Schmidt also beat out fellow countryman Steve Hansen for the coach award.
And in the final award of the evening, Irish first-five Johnny Sexton beat out Beauden Barrett and Rieko Ioane to claim the Men’s Player of the Year award.
Barrett was seeking his third title but Sexton’s form and contribution to Ireland’s stellar year was too much for judges to overlook.
It wasn’t all bad for New Zealand rugby though with Michaela Blyde winning Women’s Sevens Player of the Year and Brodie Retallick earning try of the year for his priceless dummy pass against the Wallabies.
Retiring Black Ferns captain Fiao’o Fa’amausili missed out on Women’s Player of the Year while All Blacks rookie prop Karl Tu’inukuafe was overlooked for Breakthrough Player of the Year.
World Rugby Men’s Player of the Year: Johnny Sexton (Ireland).
World Rugby Women’s Player of the Year: Jessy Tremouliere (France).
World Rugby Team of the Year: Ireland
World Rugby Coach of the Year: Joe Schmidt (Ireland)
World Rugby Referee Award: Angus Gardner
Try of the Year: Brodie Retallick (All Blacks)
World Rugby Breakthrough Player of the Year: Aphiwe Dyantyi (South Africa)
World Rugby Men’s Sevens Player of the Year: Perry Baker (USA)
World Rugby Women’s Sevens Player of the Year: Michaela Blyde (Black Ferns Sevens)
IRPA Special Merit Award: DJ Forbes (NZ), Stephen Moore (Australia)
Spirit of Rugby Award: Jamie Armstrong
Award for Character: Doddie Weir – Former Scotland international
Vernon Pugh Award for Distinguished Service: Yoshirō Mori – President of the Japan Rugby Union.