Parramatta Eels star tops the annual poll of rugby league’s match-winners.
Jarryd Hayne has been given one of the highest non-official honours in the NRL after being voted as the game’s best player by his peers.
Hayne topped the annual poll, conducted by Rugby League Week magazine in which 100 players from all 16 clubs were anonymously asked who they thought was the biggest star in the country.
The Parramatta fullback has not managed a single vote in the past two seasons as the Eels slumped and were well off the pace for finals.
However, with the blue and gold side enjoying a resurgence and with Hayne playing a key role for his club and state, he has soared to the top of the standings in the poll beating out the likes of Cameron Smith and Johnathan Thurston.
Hayne is the first New South Welshman to win the players’ poll since Andrew Johns in 2006.
“He is the first Parra player to win it since Peter Sterling won it for the second time in 1990 having also won it in 1987,” Rugby League Week editor Mitch Dale revealed.
“Hayne’s winning margin of nine votes was the highest since Thurston blitzed the field in 2009.”
Hayne is just the third Eel to win the poll, with Brett Kenny claiming the honour in its inaugural year in 1986.
Final result was:
Jarryd Hayne 30
Johnathan Thurston 21
Greg Inglis 18
Cameron Smith 16
Daly Cherry-Evans 5
Sam Burgess 3
Kieran Foran 3