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24th Mar 2015

Robbie Henshaw deserves to be Six Nations Player of the Tournament because…

... he's Athlone's finest


21 but seems like he has been around for yonks.

Robbie Henshaw arrived into the 2015 Six Nations with three Test starts to his name. He was shifted from his familiar fullback role and marked as Brian O’Driscoll’s heir at outside centre.

Joe Schmidt scrapped that notion and stuck him in at outside centre. He began the tournament with five matches as a No12 to his name.

He ended the championship with a winners’ medal around his neck and with his name featuring in most pundits, statisticians and armchair experts ‘Best Of’ teams.

The voting closes for the official Six Nations Player of the Tournament at midnight on Wednesday. The result will be announced on Friday. One of three Irish nominees, here is why Henshaw deserves to win…

The Connacht player was solid in defence and a run-and-gunner for the opener against Italy. He brought extreme physicality to the win over France, won big collisions and turnovers and made important carries.

His game of the tournament was against England, during which he scored a brilliant try [below], won his team a penalty in front of the posts, landed 14 tackles and sparked a 70-metre counter-attack. In one phase of defence, which ended with him upending Dave Atwood, Henshaw made four big defensive contributions in 54 seconds.

He ran into a Welsh wall in Cardiff but never shirked his defensive duties – 10 tackles, none missed. Excelled, again, in the finalé against Scotland. He made 72 metres on 13 carries with two line breaks thrown in for good measure.

With ball in hand, no Irish player left opponents grasping at thin air. Henshaw evaded, or ran straight through, 16 defenders during the championship.

And last, but by no means least, because he made this lad so, so happy:

obbie Henshaw scores his sides first FVV                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1/3/2015

Voting for the official Six Nations Player of the Tournament closes at midnight on Wednesday. You can cast your vote right here.

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