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Irish out-half Steenson and Ulster-bound Piutau nominated for Premiership Player of the Season

The winner will be announced tomorrow night.

Exeter Chiefs out-half Gareth Steenson.
Exeter Chiefs out-half Gareth Steenson.
Image: Andrew Matthews

GARETH STEENSON AND Charles Piutau will be in the running for the Aviva Premiership’s Player of the Season award when the winner is announced in London tomorrow night.

Steenson and Piutau, who will be in opposite corners on Saturday when Exeter Chiefs face Wasps at Sandy Park in the Premiership semi-finals, are named on a shortlist of six players who’ll be hoping to succeed George Ford as the English top flight’s stand-out performer.

Despite never being capped by Ireland, Steenson — a 32-year-old out-half from Dungannon — has played a key role in Exeter’s rise from the Championship to the upper echelons of the Premiership since he joined the Chiefs in 2008.

Piutau has had an excellent season for Wasps, during which he has alternated between centre and full-back. The 24-year-old, who has been capped 17 times by the All Blacks, will join Ulster next season.

Also named on the shortlist are Don Armand (Exeter Chiefs), George Smith (Wasps), Alex Goode and Maro Itoje (both Saracens).

“There were more than a dozen stand-out candidates and it is great to see a mixture of our own Academy graduates with a number of overseas stars. Just whittling it down to these six was an immense challenge for the panel,” said Phil Winstanley, the Rugby Director at Premiership Rugby.

“All of them have major significant contributions to a fantastic season and have been at the forefront of their clubs’ drive to the semi-finals this weekend and they can be extremely proud of making the shortlist. The winner will take his place in an impressive list of Premiership Rugby players who have won this award previously.”

Wasps v Bath Rugby - European Champions Cup - Pool Five - Ricoh Arena Wasps' Charles Piutau. Source: Joe Giddens

Previous winners:

2014/15: George Ford (Bath)
2013/14: Mike Brown (Harlequins)
2012/13: Tom Youngs (Leicester Tigers)
2011/12: Chris Robshaw (Harlequins)
2010/11: Tom Wood (Northampton Saints)
2009/10: Chris Ashton (Northampton Saints)
2008/09: Chris Robshaw (Harlequins)
2007/08: James Simpson-Daniel (Gloucester)
2006/07: Martin Castrogiovanni (Leicester Tigers)
2005/06: Mike Catt (London Irish)
2004/05: Martin Corry (Leicester Tigers)

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Paul Dollery

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