Canterbury and All Blacks No.8 Kieran Read has been nominated as a finalist in two major national rugby awards, the Super 14 and national player of the year gongs.
Read must beat out fellow Crusaders and All Blacks forward Owen Franks, a prop, and Blues halfback Alby Mathewson for the Super 14 award, while All Blacks skipper and Crusader Richie McCaw and lock Brad Thorn, also of both teams, are Read's rivals for the Kelvin R Tremain Memorial trophy.
Canterbury centre Robbie Fruean, Hawke's Bay hooker Hikawera Elliot, and Southland captain and prop Jamie Mackintosh are the finalists for the national provincial championship player of the year.
The winners will announced at a function at The Langham Hotel in Auckland on December 16.
Five teams are up for the team of the year award - all won international championships or series this year: the New Zealand under-20 team (Junior World Champions), Black Ferns (IRB Women's Rugby World Cup Champions), New Zealand Sevens (Delhi Commonwealth Games gold medallists), New Zealand Māori (unbeaten in Māori centenary series) and All Blacks (Tri Nations Champions).
Similarly, the New Zealand Rugby Coach of the Year will try and separate a field that includes New Zealand Māori Coach Jamie Joseph, under-20 coach Dave Rennie, Black Ferns Coach Brian Evans, New Zealand Sevens maestro Gordon Tietjens and All Blacks Coach Graham Henry.
There are also awards for best Age Grade, Sevens and Women's Players of the Year as well as Rugby Volunteer of the Year, Heartland Championship Player of the Year, and NZRU Referee of the Year.