Joseph wins RPA awards double

Jonathan Joseph has been rewarded for a stellar season for Bath and England
Jonathan Joseph has been rewarded for a stellar season for Bath and England

Bath and England centre Jonathan Joseph received double recognition at the annual Rugby Players' Association awards by winning the two top accolades available.

Joseph was crowned players' player of the year and England player of the year for 2015 for a stellar season for club and country that has earned comparisons with Jeremy Guscott.

The 23-year-old outside centre was recognised by his fellow professionals after helping Bath challenge for the Aviva Premiership title and scoring four tries in the recent RBS 6 Nations.

George Ford, Samu Manoa, Sinoti Sinoti and Thomas Waldrom were also shortlisted for players' player of the year, while Ford, Joe Marler and Billy Vunipola were considered for the England award.

"I'm extremely honoured to win both of these prestigious awards, especially given the immense quality amongst the other nominees," Joseph said.

"As always I would like to thank the people who've made this possible - my family and friends, team-mates, coaches and all the people who have pushed me to strive to achieve my absolute best.

"I'm enormously proud to have my name on two of the RPA's awards, it's an absolute pleasure to have received this level of recognition from my peers."

Exeter playmaker and England prospect Henry Slade was named young player of the year, Alex Gray took England sevens player of the year and Rochelle Clark was crowned England women's player of the year.

All awards were made at the RPA's annual fund-raising dinner in Battersea on Wednesday night.