ALASDAIR Strokosch has scooped the “Glengoyne Player of the Series” award for his performances on Scotland’s South African tour.
The 30-year-old flanker has become one of the leading figures in the national side over the past two years and was a popular vice-captain during the tour.
He ended it with the injury-time try against Italy which handed Greig Laidlaw the chance to claim a 30-29 victory with the conversion, a result that took Scotland from 11th to ninth in the IRB World Rankings.
Strokosch, who plays for Perpignan in France, is now enjoying a family holiday back in Scotland and was delighted to come out on top with readers of The Scotsman and online voters.
“Winning the award is a bit of a shock,” he said, “but it’s a nice thing to get and I feel very honoured to have been voted as the top player by Scotsman readers. The support of the Scottish public is a huge part of playing for Scotland and, when we were out in South Africa, we spoke about the support back home, and how we valued the good luck messages we received.
“I put a lot of hard work in to get myself in good shape for the tour and I like to think that it paid off.
“There were positives and negatives to take out of it, as I said in my Scotsman.com interview on Monday but, as a squad, I think we are now in a better place.
“Tim Swinson was my choice for Player of the Series and I thought he’d get it. He was impressive in the games but also in training, and coped well with the stick he got for being a ‘posh boy’ after Scott Johnson’s comments about him!
“I was pleased to see Alex Dunbar and Matt Scott and other new guys stand up so, while we weren’t happy with the results against Samoa and South Africa, there are positives to build on once we’ve had the chance to recharge the batteries a bit!”
Matt Scott was a close second to Strokosch with Swinson, Laidlaw, Dunbar and Sean Lamont making up the top six.
Strokosch will receive a bottle of Glengoyne 18-year-old Single Malt Whisky, and a bottle of single malt will also be on its way winning Scotsman reader Donald Millar.