The five nominees for the World Rugby U20 Championship Player of the Tournament 2016 have been announced as the competition nears its conclusion in Manchester on Saturday.
The winner of the prestigious award will be determined by rugby fans on social media platform Facebook.
Fans can vote by commenting on the World Rugby Facebook post with their nomination, using “VOTE” and the surname of the nominee, e.g. “VOTE DEEGAN” etc.
The vote will end at full-time of the final between Ireland and England on Saturday at the AJ Bell Stadium, with the winner being announced across World Rugby’s social media platforms.
In 2015, former World Rugby U20 Championship star and England number eight James Chisholm walked away with the award, beating New Zealand’s Tevita Li and Akira Ioane, as well as Australia’s Jonah Placid.
Here are the nominees:
Max Deegan (Ireland)
Number eight Deegan has been instrumental for Ireland in the four matches leading up to their first ever World Rugby U20 Championship final on Saturday. Powerful and with surprising speed for a back row, Deegan has been a key cog in the Ireland pack, scoring a crucial try against New Zealand in the pool stages as well as romping down the pitch against Argentina to score a superb solo try.
Ataata Moeakiola (Japan)
Anybody who has seen even a glimpse of this year’s World Rugby U20 Championship will know the name Ataata Moeakiola. In Japan’s opening match against South Africa he scored a hat-trick, with some even comparing him to the late Jonah Lomu. The Tongan-born winger is the top try scorer going into the final round of matches with six tries to his name.
Harry Mallinder (England)
A stand-out player during the tournament so far, Mallinder has played both fly-half and inside centre for England and has pulled the strings to help his side to their fourth successive final, a seventh in total. Mallinder has scored 45 points in total, testifying of his allround ability as a versatile back.
Shaun Stevenson (New Zealand)
A jinking step and an eye for the try-line, full-back Stevenson has shown the kind of form that has seen him break into Super Rugby for the Chiefs. He is the joint second highest try scorer in the competition with five to his name, level with teammate Caleb Makene.
Curwin Bosch (South Africa)
Another full-back up for the award this year, Bosch is a well balanced runner with a clinical boot. While South Africa failed to overcome England in the semi-final, Bosch has continued to shine throughout his side’s performances and with a bright future at Super Rugby side the Sharks, he looks set for greatness in South Africa.
With thanks to World Rugby