CJ Stander is named Irish rugby writers player of the year

CJ Stander celebrates after Ireland's victory over the All Blacks in Chicago
Stander's try helped Ireland earn an historic first win over New Zealand earlier this month

Munster and Ireland flanker CJ Stander has been named the Irish Rugby Writers player of the year for 2016.

South African-born Stander, 26, had an outstanding debut season for Ireland.

He was the stand-out player for Ireland in a disappointing Six Nations campaign after making his debut against Wales in February.

Stander continued to excel during the rest of the year as he helped Ireland earn wins over his native South Africa, New Zealand and Australia.

The flanker had a setback in June as he was sent off for a dangerous tackle on Patrick Lambie in Ireland's First Test win over the Springboks in South Africa which led to him being banned for the Second Test.

Ireland went on to lose the South Africa series 2-1 but Stander regrouped to have an outstanding autumn in the green jersey as he scored a try in Joe Schmidt team's historic win over the All Blacks and also helped the Irish defeat the Wallabies.

Stander captained Munster in Peter O'Mahony's absence last season and was also named the Irish province's 2015-16 player of the year.

The flanker joined Munster from Super Rugby side the Bulls in June 2012 and in 2015 firmly committed himself to representing Ireland.

Back in May, Stander was named the Irish Rugby players' player of the year.

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