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New Zealand sweep IRB awards

by AFP

LONDON (AFP) –

New Zealand All Blacks' fly half Dan Carter prepares to kick a conversion on December 1

New Zealand All Blacks‘ fly half Dan Carter prepares to kick a conversion during the international rugby union match between England and New Zealand at Twickenham Stadium, southwest of London, on December 1. Carter led a New Zealand clean sweep of the 2012 International Rugby Board awards announced on Monday.

Dan Carter led a New Zealand clean sweep of the 2012 International Rugby Board (IRB) awards announced in London on Monday.

The fly-half was named player of the year, with Steve Hansen winning coach of the year and the All Blacks the team of the year following a 20-match unbeaten run by the world champions that only came to an end with a shock 38-21 defeat by England at Twickenham on Saturday.

That New Zealand undefeated sequence started last year, on their way to winning the World Cup, and 2012 saw New Zealand win 12 out of 14 Tests, with their only blemishes an 18-18 draw away to Australia in October and Saturday’s stunning setback.

It was the second time the 30-year-old Carter, who this year returned from injury problems that saw him miss out on New Zealand’s World Cup triumph, had won the IRB honour, following his success in 2005.

The other nominees for 2012 player of the year were All Blacks captain Richie McCaw, a three-time winner, England outside-half Owen Farrell — who scored 17 points against New Zealand on Saturday — and France fly-half Frederic Michalak.

This was the third straight year New Zealand had won the team award, with Hansen keeping the coaching prize in the country following the back-to-back wins of World Cup-winning boss Graham Henry.

IRB player of the year winners

2012: Dan Carter (NZL)

2011: Thierry Dusautoir (FRA)

2010: Richie McCaw (NZL)

2009: Richie McCaw (NZL)

2008: Shane Williams (WAL)

2007: Bryan Habana (RSA)

2006: Richie McCaw (NZL)

2005: Dan Carter (NZL)

2004: Schalk Burger (RSA)

2003: Jonny Wilkinson (ENG)

2002: Fabien Galthie (FRA)

2001: Keith Wood (IRL)

IRB team of the year winners

2012: New Zealand

2011: New Zealand

2010: New Zealand

2009: South Africa

2008: New Zealand

2007: South Africa

2006: New Zealand

2005: New Zealand

2004: South Africa

2003: England

2002: France

2001: Australia

IRB coach of the year winners

2012: Steve Hansen (NZL)

2011: Graham Henry (NZL)

2010: Graham Henry (NZL)

2009: Declan Kidney (IRL)

2008: Graham Henry (NZL)

2007: Jake White (RSA)

2006: Graham Henry (NZL)

2005: Graham Henry (NZL)

2004: Jake White (RSA)

2003: Clive Woodward (ENG)

2002: Bernard Laporte (FRA)

2001: Rod Macqueen (AUS)

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