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Jonny May named England Men’s Player of the Year

Jonny May named England Men’s Player of the Year
  • Jonny May was named England Men's Player of the Year at the RPA awards
  • May scored six tries during the 2019 Guinness Six Nations to finish top try scorer
  • His Championship tally included a stunning first-half hat-trick against France

Jonny May’s sensational 2019 Guinness Six Nations performance was recognised by his peers at the Rugby Players’ Association Awards as he was crowned England Men’s Player of the Year.

The 29-year-old, who had already touched down nine times in his last 12 Test outings before the Championship, scored six tries during this year’s Guinness Six Nations to finish top try scorer.

His try-scoring exploits, which helped England finish second behind Grand Slam winners Wales, saw the Leicester Tigers winger take his overall tally to 15 in his last 17 Tests for Eddie Jones’ Red Rose side.

And his accomplishments over the past year were recognised in the Rugby Players’ Association (RPA) Awards ceremony at Twickenham Stadium, as he took home England Men’s Player of the Year.

The RPA Players’ Awards look to honour those for their outstanding contributions over the course of the season as well as recognising the off-field achievements of players.

May, who was nominated for Guinness Six Nations Player of the Championship, beat competition from his teammates – and fellow nominees – Tom Curry and Mark Wilson to claim the gong.

“It’s a huge honour to win this award,” said May. “My teammates are the guys I look up to and have so much respect for them, so for them to vote for me is very special.

“I am happy with how my game is going and I feel I am on the right track and improving, but it’s a team game and my teammates have been huge for helping me out.

“The guys at England have really brought the best out of me this season. You play rugby to get better – that’s certainly what I do – and normally I don’t normally set out to win awards.

“This really is a special one because your teammates have voted for you and those are the guys who you respect and for them to think of you like this is really nice.

“It’s special because they are my mates first and foremost and then they are my teammates, but the quality we have in our squad, how good they are as players, I have so much respect for them.

“I look up to them so much and they have really brought the best out of me this season, so for them to vote for me to win this award is a real honour.”

May got the ball rolling in England’s 32-20 victory over defending champions Ireland in Round One, scoring his country’s first try at the Aviva Stadium since 2011 as he dotted down inside 90 seconds.

He then bagged a stunning first-half hat-trick against France in Round Two as Les Bleus went down 44-8 at Twickenham, with all three of May’s tries coming before the half-hour mark.

Another try followed in England’s 57-14 triumph against Italy in Round Four before he also got on the scoresheet in the stunning 38-38 draw with Calcutta Cup rivals Scotland in Round Five.

Elsewhere, prop Sarah Bern took home the England Women’s Player of the Year award after starring for the Red Roses as they sealed a memorable Women’s Six Nations Grand Slam.