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Fri 22 Mar 2013 | 03:01

Halfpenny claims top gong

Halfpenny claims top gong
Fri 22 Mar 2013 | 03:01

Halfpenny claims top gong

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Welsh fullback Leigh Halfpenny has clinched the coveted Six Nations Player of the Championship award.

He won by securing an impressive 40 percent of the public's vote.

Over 80,000 people voted to have their say, which was more than three times the number in 2012.

For the first time ever, the 15-man shortlist was decided through a mixture of technical statistics and fan sentiment on social media, producing a shortlist more representative of public opinion.

Alessandro Zanni came in second with 11 percent of the vote, who was followed by Scotland's Stuart Hogg, with eight percent.

Halfpenny scored a staggering 74 points for Wales during a total of 400 minutes of play, as the nation secured their fourth Six Nations title in nine years.

"I can't thank the people who voted for me enough," Halfpenny said.

"It's a real honour and privilege to be voted Six Nations Player of the Championship, and I'm overwhelmed to be in amongst the players shortlisted.

"It's the icing on the cake of an exceptional year for Wales, and it is a privilege to be part of such an exceptional group of people.

"For my name to be added to the list of players who have won this award in the past is incredible and extremely humbling."

PV: 20
Halfpenny Claims Top Gong | Rugby365