Serfontein wins top IRB award
Jan Serfontein (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - The International Rugby Board (IRB) has announced Jan Serfontein as the winner of the IRB Junior Player of the Year Award for 2012, following the final of the Junior World Championship at Newlands.
Hosts South Africa won the final against New Zealand 22-16 with Jan Serfontein scoring the vital second try to win the game for the Boks.
Serfontein was the popular choice of the three nominees after voting of team managers, match officials and media at the tournament.
The 19-year-old centre from Port Elizabeth has also starred at the Craven Week tournament, and was named player of the tournament in 2011.
With Vodacom Cup experience already under his belt following a debut for the Blue Bulls this year, Serfontein has shown himself to be a class player with excellent distribution of the ball.
He is elusive and creative, with great vision and awareness. His running lines have been exceptional, and his ability to break has set up many tries as he creates time and space for others.
Serfontein has been described by commentators as a player in the mould of Brian O’Driscoll.
“We have enjoyed some wonderful individual performances at this tournament and some memorable matches. The skill levels, passion and dedication of the future stars of rugby on show in Cape Town during the past three weeks have been breathtaking,” said IRB Vice Chairman Oregan Hoskins. Previous Winners:
2011 - IRB Junior Player of the Year: George Ford (England)
2010 - IRB Junior Player of the Year: Julian Savea (New Zealand)
2009 - IRB Junior Player of the Year: Aaron Cruden (New Zealand)
2008 - IRB Junior Player of the Year: Luke Braid (New Zealand)
2007 - IRB International U19 Player of the Year: Robert Fruean (New Zealand)
2006 - IRB International U19 Player of the Year: Josh Holmes (Australia)
2006 - IRB International U21 Player of the Year: Lionel Beauxis (France)
2005 - IRB International U19 Player of the Year: Isaia Toeava (New Zealand)
2005 - IRB International U21 Player of the Year: Tatafu Polota-Nau (Australia)
2004 - IRB International U19 Player of the Year: Jeremy Thrush (New Zealand)
2004 - IRB International U21 Player of the Year in association with Waterford Crystal: Jerome Kaino (New Zealand)
2003 - IRB U19 Player of the Year: Jean Baptiste Payras (France)
2003 - IRB U21 Player of the Year in assoc. with Waterford Crystal: Ben Atiga (New Zealand)
2002 - IRB U19 Player of the Year: Luke McAlister (New Zealand)
2002 - IRB U21 Player of the Year, in assoc. with Waterford: Pat Barnard (South Africa)
2001 - IRB Young Player of the Year: Gavin Henson (Wales)Jan Serfontein is the 2012 IRB Young Player of the Year