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Candidates announced for 2022 RLPA Players' Champion award

The Rugby League Players Association has announced the Contenders list for The Players’ Champion (NRL) award – outlining the four players from each team who are eligible for the prestigious individual honour.

The winners of both the NRL and NRLW The Players’ Champion awards will be announced during Channel 9’s Grand Final coverage on October 2.

Past recipients Nathan Cleary (Penrith Panthers), James Tedesco (Sydney Roosters), and Kalyn Ponga (Knights) feature on the star-studded shortlist.

About The Players’ Champion voting:

  • The Contenders’ list is made up of four players from each club that are nominated to be eligible for The Players’ Champion award.
  • RLPA Delegates at each Club put forward the three best players from their own team.
  • An RLPA Working Group nominates a fourth player to round out the nomination process.
  • In total, 64 players (four from each team) are eligible to receive votes in the end-of-season poll.
  • Voting is open to all contracted NRL players, with each player selecting opposition players using a 3-2-1 format.
  • Players are not penalised for any suspensions and/or fines received during the course of the season.
  • Players cannot vote for their teammates.
  • The player with the most number of votes is awarded The Players’ Champion.
  • The five Finalists for The Players’ Champion (NRL) will be announced on October 21.
  • The Players’ Awards will also include a Rookie of the Year, a Dream Team, and the Dennis Tutty Award for both NRL and NRLW players.

All The Players’ Awards will be announced on Channel 9 on the following dates:

  • September 18: Dennis Tutty Award (NRL & NRLW)
  • September 20: Players’ Dream Team (NRL)
  • September 25: Players’ Rookie of the Year (NRL & NRLW)
  • September 28: Players’ Dream Team (NRLW)
  • October 2: The Players’ Champion (NRL & NRLW)

The 64 Contenders for The Players’ Champion (NRL):

Sydney Roosters

  • James Tedesco
  • Joseph Manu
  • Joseph Sua’ali’i
  • Jared Waerea-Hargreaves

South Sydney Rabbitohs

  • Alex Johnston
  • Keaon Koloamatangi
  • Junior Tatola
  • Latrell Mitchell

Manly Sea Eagles 

  • Kieran Foran
  • Haumole Olakau’atu
  • Jake Trbojevic
  • Daly Cherry-Evans

Penrith Panthers

  • Dylan Edwards
  • Isaah Yeo
  • Apisai Koroisau
  • Nathan Cleary

St George Illawarra Dragons

  • Ben Hunt
  • Moses Suli
  • Jack De Belin
  • Jack Bird

Canberra Raiders

  • Joe Tapine
  • Adam Elliott
  • Hudson Young
  • Jack Wighton

Gold Coast Titans

  • Tino Fa'asuamaleaui
  • Erin Clark
  • Moeaki Fotuaika
  • Beau Fermor

Brisbane Broncos

  • Patrick Carrigan
  • Payne Haas
  • Adam Reynolds
  • Corey Oates

Wests Tigers 

  • Joe Ofahengaue
  • Kelma Tuilagi
  • Jackson Hastings
  • Daine Laurie

Melbourne Storm

  • Cameron Munster
  • Harry Grant
  • Justin Olam
  • Nelson Asofa-Solomona


  • Tohu Harris
  • Marcelo Montoya
  • Wayde Egan
  • Addin Fonua-Blake

North Queensland Cowboys 

  • Valentine Holmes
  • Reece Robson
  • Scott Drinkwater
  • Jeremiah Nanai

Newcastle Knights

  • David Klemmer
  • Dane Gagai
  • Dominic Young
  • Kalyn Ponga

Canterbury Bulldogs

  • Max King
  • Jeremy Marshall-King
  • Matt Burton
  • Josh Addo-Carr

Parramatta Eels

  • Shaun Lane
  • Dylan Brown
  • Mitch Moses
  • Clint Gutherson

Cronulla Sharks

  • Nicho Hynes
  • Siosifa Talakai
  • Ronaldo Mulitalo
  • Toby Rudolf
Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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