Aki honoured with players' award
Published 25/03/2016 | 02:30
Star Connacht centre Bundee Aki has claimed the Hartmanns of Galway and Seiko Watches February Player of the Month award.
The 25-year-old New Zealander has 34 caps for the province and has scored six tries in his two seasons at the Sportsground.
Aki joined from Super Rugby franchise, the Chiefs, last term, and after an injury-hit first season, he has been the fulcrum of Connacht's backline in 2015/'16.
He has formed a solid centre-partnership with Craig Ronaldson in Robbie Henshaw's absence, and they continue to do damage in the Pro12 and in Europe.
This season Aki has amassed 21 appearances and is one of Connacht's most consistent performers with five tries.
In February, he played in all 80 minutes of the three Connacht games as Pat Lam's men stayed at or near the summit of the Pro12 - Aki also dotted down on two occasions.
He grabbed the crucial fourth try as Connacht claimed a valuable bonus-point 26-21 victory over Dragons at Rodney Parade.
Aki didn't score a try against Zebre, but once again he was instrumental as Connacht defeated the Italians 51-34 in Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi to secure another bonus-point win on February 20.
In Round 16, he won the man of the match award and scored another try in Connacht's vital 30-22 win at home to Ospreys.
Aki won this award ahead of AJ MacGinty and Tom McCartney. Out-half MacGinty has been in top form since Jack Carty suffered his ruptured spleen, while McCartney continues to be a stalwart in the destructive Connacht front-row.