Farrell makes awards shortlist

Owen Farrell
Owen Farrell

Wiganer Owen Farrell has been named on a six-strong shortlist for World Rugby men’s player of the year for 2016.

The Saracens’ No.10 is joined by England team-mates Maro Itoje and Billy Vunipola on the list.

There is class in abundance on this shortlist. There is also a great mix of experienced, proven campaigners and exciting young talent

Bill Beaumont

Also included among the nominees is Ireland number eight Jamie Heaslip, who started Saturday’s historic 40-29 victory over New Zealand in Chicago.

Completing the list of contenders are All Blacks Dane Coles and Beauden Barrett, with the winner to be announced on Sunday.

Itoje, Farrell and Vunipola have played starring roles in England amassing a 10-Test winning run, nine of them falling under the guidance of head coach Eddie Jones.

The results brought with them a Grand Slam and 3-0 series whitewash of Australia in June.

The trio were also involved in Saracens’ march to a European and Aviva Premiership double.

“There is class in abundance on this shortlist. There is also a great mix of experienced, proven campaigners and exciting young talent,” World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont said.

Also included among the nominees is Ireland number eight Jamie Heaslip, who started Saturday’s historic 40-29 victory over New Zealand in Chicago.

Completing the list of contenders are All Blacks Dane Coles and Beauden Barrett, with the winner to be announced on Sunday.