Tommy Seymour was the big Scottish winner at last night’s Guinness Pro12 awards ceremony in Dublin as the Glasgow Warriors wing was judged to have scored the try of the season.
The Scotland internationalist scooped the Sky Sports-sponsored award for his effort against Ulster in a 27-17 win at Scotstoun in March.
Fans gave the Nashville-born flier 28.5 per cent of the vote and he pipped Craig Gilroy of Ulster and Bundee Aki of Connacht to the title.
It was a good night for the Galway-based province, who beat Glasgow 14-7 on Saturday to secure a home semi-final against the champions on 21 May. Aki clinched the Guinness Players’ Player of the Season – voted for by all 12 captains and vice-captains of the Guinness Pro12 teams, ahead of Stuart Hogg (Glasgow Warriors) and CJ Stander (Munster).
The Connacht head coach Pat Lam was named Guinness Pro12 Coach of the Season, succeeding Glasgow’s Gregor Townsend who won the accolade last year. Ospreys’ 22-year-old stand-off, Sam Davies, was voted Young Player of the Season by a selected media panel ahead of Garry Ringrose and Josh van der Flier (both Leinster).
Connacht also dominated the Dream Team with seven inclusions, while Scotland only contributed two, with Glasgow lock Leone Nakarawa and Edinburgh No 8 Cornell du Preez being named. Nakarawa is heading for pastures new at the end of the season and has enjoyed another brilliant campaign for the Warriors.
South Africa-born Du Preez qualifies for Scotland in a few months and has been almost an ever-present for Edinburgh, who lost 21-17 at home to Cardiff on Saturday to finish the season in ninth place.
The Dream Team selection had a stipulation of a minimum ten appearances in the Pro12 this season, which ruled many of Glasgow’s star players out of the running. The likes of Hogg, Finn Russell and Jonny Gray had not made ten appearances at the time of voting due to their World Cup and Six Nations commitments.
The battle for the Rhino Golden Boot Award went right down to the wire on the last day of the regular season, with Jason Tovey, who finished the season with Edinburgh, placing fifth with 39 successes out of 51 kicks (76.47 per cent).
The award was clinched by Cardiff Blues’ Gareth Anscombe with 81.25 per cent (26 successes from 32 attempts) ahead of Scarlets’ Steve Shingler (78.37 per cent, 29 success from 37 attempts) and Paddy Jackson of Ulster, (77.77per cent, 49 successes from 63 attempts). The three conversions Anscombe landed at BT Murrayfield on Saturday helped him secure the award.
Ulster won the ‘Specsavers Fair Play Award’ and £10,000 to spend on their youth development programme. The Irish province pipped Ospreys to the award with just six yellow cards.
Guinness Players’ Player of the Season: Bundee Aki (Connacht)
Guinness Pro12 Coach of the Season: Pat Lam (Connacht)
Guinness Pro12 Young Player of the Season: Sam Davies (Ospreys)
Sky Sports Try of the Season: Tommy Seymour (Glasgow)
Specsavers Fair Play Award: Ulster Rugby
Rhino Golden Boot: Gareth Anscombe (Cardiff Blues)
Guinness Pro12 Chairman’s Award: John Muldoon (Connacht)
Guinness Pro12 Dream Team: 15: Isa Nacewa (Leinster, captain); 14: Matt Healy (Connacht); 13: Bundee Aki (Connacht); 12: Ben Te’o (Leinster); 11: Craig Gilroy (Ulster); 10: Sam Davies (Ospreys); 9: Kieran Marmion (Connacht); 1: Dennis Buckley (Connacht); 2: Tom McCartney (Connacht); 3: Finlay Bealham (Connacht); 4: Leone Nakarawa (Glasgow); 5: Ultane Dillane (Connacht); 6: CJ Stander (Munster); 7: Josh Van Der Flier (Leinster); 8: Cornell du Preez (Edinburgh).