16 Sep 2015

Matulino named Warriors player of the year

11:38 am on 16 September 2015

The Warriors prop Ben Matulino has been named the NRL club's player of the year.

2015 Warriors Player of the Year Ben Matulino.

2015 Warriors Player of the Year Ben Matulino. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Matulino was handed the honour for the second time in four years at their Awards dinner on Tuesday night.

The 27-year-old joins former captain Steve Price (2006 and 2007) and current skipper Simon Mannering (2008, 2011, 2013 and 2014) as the only other players who have won the award multiple times.

Matulino topped the Warriors' lists this season for most runs with 349 and for most metres gained - 3245.

He also made 53 offloads, the second-highest among all players in the NRL.

"I was surprised, I thought it would go to Simon (Mannering), the amount of work he does for the team and the amount of positions he covers as well," Matulino said.

Mannering was again a finalist, along with halfback Shaun Johnson, who missed the last six games of the season through injury.

Matulino, first named player of the year in 2012, appeared in 21 matches and missed only three games due to suspension.

Meanwhile the North Queensland league star Johnathan Thurston has taken out the players' player medal for the third straight year and an unprecedented fourth time overall at the Rugby League Players' Association awards night.

Thurston claimed the honour was higher than the prestigious Dally M medal awarded to the best player of the year.

His comments come just a week after he theatened to boycott this year's gala awards, due to the players' union's ongoing collective bargaining agreement negotiations with the NRL which began in March.

In his acceptance speech Thurston made special mention of Roger Tuivasa-Sheck who he thinks will develop into one of the best Kiwi fullbacks of all time.

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