Manawatu’s Aaron Cruden is one of three finalists for Super Rugby player of the year, after guiding the Chiefs to the title earlier this year.
His team-mate, Chief captain Craig Clarke, and Hurricanes and All Blacks midfielder Conrad Smith are the other finalists at the 2012 Steinlager Rugby Awards.
Rising Manawatu star Jason Emery is a finalist for age grade player of the year, while the Turbos’ Tomasi Cama is once again a finalist for sevens player of the year.
Former Manawatu coach Dave Rennie has been nominated for the coach of the year award.
Nominations for the Tom French Memorial Maori Player of the Year, and the Kelvin R Tremain Memorial Player of the Year, and the NZRU Women's Player of the Year will be confirmed in early December when the All Blacks, Black Ferns and Maori All Blacks complete their northern tours.
2012 Steinlager Rugby Awards Nominees
Investec Super Rugby Player of the Year:
Craig Clarke (Chiefs)
Aaron Cruden (Chiefs)
Conrad Smith (Hurricanes)
Richard Crawshaw Memorial Sevens Player of the Year:
Tomasi Cama (Manawatu)
Tim Mikkelson (Waikato)
Lote Raikabula (Wellington)
NZRU Age Grade Player of the Year:
NZRU Referee of the Year:
Charles Monro Rugby Volunteer of the Year:
Bill Anderson (Southland)
Jim Lonergan (Auckland)
Ray Watson (Bay of Plenty)
ITM Cup Player of the Year:
Robbie Fruean (Canterbury)
Tim Nanai-Williams (Counties Manukau)
Charles Piutau (Auckland)
Heartland Championship Player of the Year:
Ben Coman (Buller)
Tau Moeke (East Coast)
Peter Rowe (Wanganui)
New Zealand Rugby Coach of the Year:
Steve Hansen (All Blacks)
Dave Rennie (Chiefs)
Gordon Tietjens (All Blacks Sevens)
adidas Team of the Year:
Kelvin R Tremain Memorial Player of the Year
Tom French Memorial Player of the Year
NZRU Women's Player of the Year
To be announced at a later date
To be announced on the night.
- Manawatu Standard
Will Aaron Cruden's omission hurt or help the All Blacks?Related story: Senior All Blacks 'pretty disappointed' in Cruden