White scoops rugby writers' prize

JASON White, who captained Scotland to their best ever finish in last year's RBS Six Nations Championship and was an influential figure as Sale Sharks won the Guinness Premiership, was honoured last night by the Rugby Union Writers' Club.

White, the 57-times-capped back-row forward, follows in the footsteps of Gareth Edwards, David Campese, Jonah Lomu, Martin Johnson and Jonny Wilkinson, in winning the Pat Marshall Memorial Award for season 2005-06.

The award was determined by a poll of rugby writers from around the world and was presented at the annual dinner.

It follows White winning the recognition of his peers as Players' Player of the Year in both Scotland and England last season during which he was also named The Famous Grouse Scotland Player of the Year. And confirming his standing on a global scale, White was listed in a World XV of the year chosen in the New Zealand Herald newspaper.

White, who captained Scotland to victories over France, England and Italy, is currently undergoing rehabilitation following surgery for a knee injury sustained against Romania in November.

He said: "I'm obviously very pleased to win this award, particularly when I hear of some of the previous recipients. It's a bit frustrating at the moment being injured but I'm working hard on my rehab and hope to be back in action as soon as I can."

Scotland coach Frank Hadden said: "Jason thoroughly deserves this recognition. Not only has he received the plaudits of his peers but his contribution has been lauded by the rugby media too."