Northampton Saints’ Rory Hutchinson was today heralded as one of the country’s brightest young talents after being named Gallagher Premiership Rugby Player of the Month for February 2019.
The centre hit a hot run of form last month scoring as the Saints consolidated their spot in the Gallagher Premiership Rugby top six and his performances were lauded by former Rugby World Cup winner and BT Sport pundit Nolli Waterman.
“There is an impressive crop of young players emerging across Gallagher Premiership Rugby and in recent weeks Rory has stood out as Northampton Saints climbed the table,” said Waterman.
“Rory is a wonderfully balanced runner who has the ability to glide through defences and recently even took over the kicking duties for the Saints. His finishing is not in question with his recent, acrobatic effort against Sale Sharks.”
Hutchinson was presented with his award by Reverend Jez Safford (above) a Gallagher Community Hero for Northampton Saints, and Club Chaplain at the club.
At the start of its first season as the new title partner of Premiership Rugby, Gallagher asked each Premiership club to nominate two people who they feel best demonstrates the values and community commitment within their rugby family. The search resulted in 24 Gallagher Community Heroes, such as Revd Safford.
Revd Safford said: “I was delighted to present Rory with his much-deserved Player of the Month award – he’s been outstanding and has such a positive attitude around the club both on and off the pitch, balancing time for others alongside a busy schedule. I’d also like to thank Gallagher for asking me to present the award - I was thrilled when I was asked to be one of the Community Heroes for Northampton Saints”
Throughout the season, Gallagher, itself a passionate community broker, continues to support and shine a light on the positive work that is being done around the game as part of its ongoing commitment to both the professional game and the broader rugby community.
Hutchinson – as part of his prize for being named Gallagher Premiership Rugby Player of the Month – wins 25 tickets to a future Northampton Saints match to be gifted to a local club, school or community group of his choice.
Hutchinson was judged by a panel of experts as the player who made the biggest impact in Gallagher Premiership Rugby over the month of February.
He was involved in a three-way battle to win the award eventually beating Gloucester Rugby No 8 Ben Morgan and Harlequins full-back Mike Brown to the title.
Hutchinson was voted for by a panel of media professionals based on his performances in February, alongside a public poll which drew almost 2,000 votes on the Premiership Rugby app. The judges were: Nick Mullins (BT Sport), Alastair Eykyn (BT Sport), Mick Cleary (The Daily Telegraph), Sarah Mockford (Rugby World), Jonny Fordham (The Sun), Robert Kitson (The Guardian), Chris Jones (BBC 5 Live), David Rogers (Getty Images) and Tom Hamilton (ESPN). The panel was chaired by Paul Morgan, Premiership Rugby's Communications Director.
Winners in the 2018-19 season
February – Rory Hutchinson (Northampton Saints)
December – Cobus Reinach (Northampton Saints)
November – Ollie Thorley (Gloucester Rugby)
October – Alex Goode (Saracens)
September – Danny Cipriani (Gloucester Rugby)
Winners in the 2017-18 season
April – Vereniki Goneva (Newcastle Falcons)
March – Joe Simmonds (Exeter Chiefs)
February – Jack Willis (Wasps)
December – Josh Adams (Worcester Warriors)
November – Ruan Ackermann (Gloucester Rugby)
October – Jonny May (Leicester Tigers)
September – Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
Winners in the 2016-17 season
April – Taulupe Faletau (Bath Rugby)
March – Christian Wade (Wasps)
February – James Short (Exeter Chiefs)
December – Tom Varndell (Bristol Rugby)
November – Freddie Burns (Leicester Tigers)
October – Mako Vunipola (Saracens)
September – Jimmy Gopperth (Wasps)
Winners in the 2015-16 season
October – Nick Evans (Harlequins)
November – Nathan Hughes (Wasps)
December – Maro Itoje (Saracens)
January – Thomas Waldrom (Exeter Chiefs)
February – George Smith (Wasps)
March – Francois Hougaard (Worcester Warriors)
April – Teimana Harrison (Northampton Saints)
Winners in the 2014-15 season
September – Kyle Eastmond (Bath Rugby)
October – Semesa Rokoduguni (Bath Rugby)
November – Thomas Waldrom (Exeter Chiefs)
December – Samu Manoa (Northampton Saints)
January – Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby)
February – Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
March – Elliot Daly (Wasps)
April – Joe Simpson (Wasps)
Winners in the 2013-14 season
September – Jacques Burger (Saracens)
October – Samu Manoa (Northampton Saints)
November - George Ford (Bath Rugby)
December – Nick Easter (Harlequins)
January – Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints)
February – Vereniki Goneva (Leicester Tigers)
March – Danny Cipriani (Sale Sharks)