Autumn Nations Series: France wing Damian Penaud beats Ardie Savea and Ange Capuozzo to Player of the Series prize

Adam Kyriacou
France wing Damian Penaud against Japan

France wing Damian Penaud has been crowned Player of the Series for the 2022 Autumn Nations Series after he starred for Les Bleus in November.

Penaud, 26, was outstanding for the French as they wrapped up an unbeaten year with victories over Australia, South Africa and Japan last month.

He takes the prize ahead of New Zealand number eight Ardie Savea and Italy full-back Ange Capuozzo, who were both excellent over recent matches.

Public had their say

The three candidates were selected by a panel of journalists from each country and pundits from across the home nations before the public voted.

Penaud scored the match winner for Les Bleus in their opening game of the autumn, against the Wallabies, as they came from behind to win 30-29.

He then started the 30-26 victory over the Springboks before scoring a double against the Brave Blossoms, a match France comfortably won 35-17.

The lethal Penaud now sits on 21 tries in just 37 Tests and is 17 crossings behind all-time top scorer Serge Blanco, who scored 38 tries in 93 Tests.

To see off the superb Savea, who was recently overlooked as a nominee for the World Rugby Player of the Year award, is an achievement in itself.

Sees off in-form duo

Savea followed up a solid Rugby Championship campaign with a great Autumn Nations Series but he ultimately came up short in the public vote.

Meanwhile, Capuozzo scored twice against the Wallabies in the Azzurri’s 28-27 victory and then once against the Springboks in their 63-21 defeat.

READ MORE: State of the Nation: All Blacks show promise after dispiriting start to the campaign