Friday 30 September 2016

Jamie Heaslip makes five-man shortlist for EPCR European Player of the Year

Published 22/04/2015 | 19:53

Leinster's Jamie Heaslip has made the five-man shortlist for the 2015 EPCR European Player of the Year.
Leinster's Jamie Heaslip has made the five-man shortlist for the 2015 EPCR European Player of the Year.

Leinster number eight Jamie Heaslip is the sole Irish representative for the 2015 EPCR European Player of the Year.

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The Kildare native is bidding to become the third Leinster player to win the award in the last five years after Sean O'Brien (2011) and Rob Kearney in 2012.

The three-time Heineken Cup winners bowed out at the penultimate stage to Toulon after extra-time in Marseilles, but Heaslip has been a model of consistency in what has been a topsy-turvy season for Matt O'Connor's side.

The 31 year-old was ever-present during Leinster's for the final and captain Heaslip led by example and is the number one ball carrier in the competition.

The other four contenders have also enjoyed stellar campaigns. A trio of English men, Nick Abendanon of Clermont Auvergne, Saracens number 8 Billy Vunipola and Toulon powerhouse Steffon Armitage, bidding for a second successive award, will provide stiff competition.

Clermont's New Zealand born number 8 Fritz Lee completes the short-list.

The judging panel includes Emmanuel Massicard (Editor, Midi Olympique), Stuart Barnes (Sky Sports/The Sunday Times), Alan Quinlan (Sky Sports/The Irish Times), Mick Cleary (Rugby Correspondent, The Daily Telegraph) and Dimitri Yachvili (beIN Sports).

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