Western Force and Wallabies winger Nick Cummins has been named ahead of Israel Folau and Michael Hooper as Australian players' player of the year.
Twenty-six-year-old Cummins won the Medal of Excellence for his blistering form on the Wallabies' recent European tour, his perseverance after an injury-hampered Super Rugby season and his charity work.
The medal recognises not only on-field performances but also an individual's contribution to the community, the Australian Rugby Union said.
Openside flanker Hooper had been favoured to take the title after recently winning the prestigious John Eales Medal.
The other finalists Folau and fellow Wallabies playmaker Christian Lealiifano were upstaged by Cummins, who becomes the fourth consecutive winner from Western Force after David Pocock (2010) and Nathan Sharpe (2011 and 2012).