Saracens’ Tom Whiteley and Wasps’ Jack Willis are the final two players to make the shortlist for the Anglo-Welsh Cup Breakthrough Player Award.
They join Northampton Saints’ Harry Mallinder, Gloucester’s Cameron Orr, James Chisholm of Harlequins, a former World U20 player of the year, Exeter Chiefs duo Sam Simmonds and Stuart Townsend, Bath’s Zach Mercer, currently on England U20 duty, and Willis’ Wasps colleague, Tom Howe.
The Breakthrough Player Award is open to the best Under-23 players in the Anglo-Welsh Cup with two shortlisted players being named after each round, a back and a forward, based on OPTA match statistics. Two further players, Willis and Whiteley, with outstanding stats throughout the competition, have then been added to form the full shortlist.
While that shortlist is chosen by stats, it is a public vote that will decide the winner. The vote opens tomorrow, with the winner announced in advance of the Anglo-Welsh Final, which takes place on Sunday 19th March at the Twickenham Stoop.
The award launched in 2012, England winger Jack Nowell is a former winner, as was his fellow England wing Jonny May. Northampton Saints winger Tom Collins is also a winner, while Exeter Chiefs’ Ollie Devoto has also picked up the prestigious award.
You can vote for this year’s winner from Wednesday 8th March via the following link: www.new-heroes.com from the shortlist below.
Anglo-Welsh Cup Breakthrough Player Award Shortlist:
Josh Adams – Worcester Warriors
James Chisholm – Harlequins
Tom Howe – Wasps
Harry Mallinder – Northampton Saints
Zach Mercer – Bath
Cameron Orr – Gloucester
Sam Simmonds – Exeter Chiefs
Stuart Townsend – Exeter Chiefs
Tom Whiteley – Saracens
Jack Willis – Wasps