Josh van der Flier has become just the third Irishman to win the 'World Rugby Men's Player of the Year' award

Josh van der Flier has become just the third Irishman to win the 'World Rugby Men's Player of the Year' award

IRELAND AND LEINSTER'S Josh van der Flier has capped of a brillant year by winning the World Rugby Men's Player of the Year award on Sunday

The Wicklow native has been outstanding for Andy Farrell's Ireland this year.

The Irish team won the Triple Crown, recorded a historic series win in New Zealand, and won all their Bank of Ireland Nations Series this month.

The Leinster flanker has now become the third Irish player to win the award

Munster's Keith Wood won the award in 2001 and his Ireland Leinster teammate Johnny Sexton won the award in 2018

The 29-year-old ironically beat Sexton to his second award, France scrum-half Antoine Dupont and South Africa centre Lukhanyo Am were also up for the prize in Monaco.

However Sexton made the World Team of the year. It also included the likes Tadhg Beirne, Van der Flier, Tadhg Furlong

"I've been incredibly fortunate to have great team-mates and coaches that have really pushed me on, as well as my wife and my family supporting me a huge amount," admitted Van der Flier.

"The win over in New Zealand would be right up there in terms of rugby," he added when asked about his highlight of the year. "But my wife is sitting there staring at me, I got married in August, so that has to be at the top!"

In other news Ireland's Terry Kennedy was named 7s Player of the Year.

Kennedy finished as the top try-scorer in the World Series last season with 50 tries.. His impressive scoring rate helped Ireland finish third at the Rugby Seven'sWorld Cup,

"The growth has been incredible. We started at the bottom and have gone to the Olympics and then got third place at the World Cup in September," Kennedy said on the same night

"I think it's incredible what we've done in the last few years. Hopefully it can continue over the next few years."

Unfortunately for Ireland, they couldn't make it a hat trick win on the night.

Ireland's head coach Farrell lost out on the World Rugby Coach of the Year award to New Zealand's Wayne Smith.

Smith has transformed the New Zealand Women’s 15s into a potent force once more.

Finally Ireland's Mack Hansen and Dan Sheehan were nominated for Breakthrough Player of the Year, but lost out to Italian superstar Ange Capuozzo.

World Player of the Year; Josh van der Flier

World Rugby men's 15s dream team: Freddie Steward; Will Jordan, Lukhanyo Am, Damian de Allende, Marika Koroibete; Johnny Sexton, Antoine Dupont; Ellis Genge, Malcolm Marx, Tadhg Furlong; Tadhg Beirne, Sam Whitelock; Pablo Matera, Josh van der Flier, Gregory Alldritt.

World Rugby Coach of the Year: Wayne Smith (New Zealand Women’s 15s)

Breakthrough Player of the Year: Ange Capuozzo

The full list of winners in different catergory's can be found here