Mafi crowned Rebels Players' Player

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

Amanaki Mafi has capped an incredible debut Super Rugby season with a fitting award, having been named the Rebels Players' Player.

There was never any doubt as to who would win this award, such is the standard of Mafi's form this season.

He has led from the front with barnstorming carries, bone rattling hits and an unparalleled work rate.

In a remarkable debut season, he led all Super Rugby players in carries (184), has had more run metres (1378m) and offloads (30) than any other forward and ranked second in the competition for tackle busts (48).

That stat line alone begs belief but it's the passion and determination that he plays with that inspires his peers.Mafi saluted the crowd as he left the field against the Jaguares. Photo: Getty ImagesIt is the fifth straight year a Rebels backrower has claimed the prize, with Sean McMahon's injury riddled season holding him back from defending the title for a third straight year.

Mafi, who is believed to be very close to signing on for 2018, finished in front of Colby Faingaa, Marika Koroibete, Reece Hodge and Tom English.

English didn't go home empty handed, though, winning the Spirit of Weary Dunlop award for best exemplifying the club's values.

Fereti Saaga was crowned the Rebels Rookie of the Year - marking the first time a Melbourne raised player has won the award.

Koroibete was awarded the Try of the Year gong, finishing a stellar team try against the Crusaders in round 14.