Shane Williams picks up special Pro12 chairman's award

Shane Williams, Wales and Ospreys wing
Shane Williams of the Ospreys

Shane Williams picked up a special honour at the Pro12 Awards Dinner in Cardiff for the 2011-12 season.

Wales' leading try-scorer, who retires from the game at the end of this season, picked up the Chairman's Award.

Edinburgh winger Tim Visser has been named the Pro12 Players' Player of the Year.

Glasgow's full-back Stuart Hogg was named Young Player of the Year, while Joe Schmidt, the Leinster coach, was crowned Coach of the Year.

Dutch winger Visser, who will qualify for Scotland later this year, was the competition's leading try scorer for the third straight season with 14, taking his haul to 36 in 56 appearances.

Glasgow Warriors full-back Hogg, 19, was named as the Young Player of the Year, finishing ahead of Gloucester-bound Ben Morgan and Leinster's Ian Madigan.

Leinster's fly-half Jonathan Sexton claimed the golden boot as the leading kicker in the competition. He ended with a 90% goal-kicking success rate from his six appearances, including a run of 13 successive goals.

Leinster landed a £10,000 cheque to put towards youth development after winning the Fair Play Award for the second season in a row for having the fewest yellow and red cards and citings.

The other Welsh winner on the night was international referee Nigel Owens. He was awarded the inaugural 'RaboDirect Straight Talking' title for the no-nonsense way in which he communicated with players throughout the season.

RaboDirect PRO12 awards:

Players' Player of the Season: Tim Visser (Edinburgh)

Young Player of the Season: Stuart Hogg (Glasgow)

Coach of the Season: Joe Schmidt (Leinster)

Chairman's Award: Shane Williams (Ospreys)

Golden Boot: Jonathan Sexton (Leinster)

Fair Play Award: Leinster

Straight Talking Award: Nigel Owens

RaboDirect Pro12 Dream Team 2011-12: Isa Nacewa (Leinster); Tim Visser (Edinburgh), Casey Laulala (Blues), Ashley Beck (Ospreys), Alex Cuthbert (Blues); Duncan Weir (Glasgow Warriors), Ruan Pienaar (Ulster); Jon Welsh (Glasgow Warriors), Richardt Strauss (Leinster), BJ Botha (Munster), Dan Tuohy (Ulster), Tom Ryder (Glasgow Warriors), Dave Denton (Edinburgh), Justin Tipuric (Ospreys), Ben Morgan (Scarlets)

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