The King Of Rugby League Awards

Who is the best Rugby League player in the world?

There are a myriad of different Rugby League awards being handed out these days. Some of them have the respect of players, fans and administrators, while others clearly don’t.

None of the awards on offer however take into account the game as a whole, taking an unbiased view over an entire season over the entire Rugby League playing world.

The King Of Rugby League award is the only award that takes into account a players form over an entire calendar year. To win the award you have to show you were consistently one of the best players at club, representative and test level.

2023
The King Of Rugby League Award: Nathan Cleary
Rookie Of The Year: Sunia Turuva
Team Of The Year: Penrith Panthers
Representative Player Of The Year: Edwin Ipape
Biggest Story: The Penrith Panthers become the best team of the modern era by winning their third straight title.

2022
The King Of Rugby League Award: Nathan Cleary
Rookie Of The Year: Izack Tago
Team Of The Year: Penrith Panthers
Representative Player Of The Year: Jerome Luai
Biggest Story: Penrith Panthers Make It Back-To-Back Titles

2021
The King Of Rugby League Award: Nathan Cleary
Rookie Of The Year: Reece Walsh
Team Of The Year: Toulouse Olympique
Representative Player Of The Year: Aleksandr Skorbach
Biggest Story: Penrith Panthers Dismantle Premiership Trophy

2020
The King Of Rugby League Award: James Tedesco
Rookie Of The Year: Harry Grant
Team Of The Year: Queensland
Representative Player Of The Year: Mawuli Amefia
Biggest Story: Global Pandemic Shuts Down Game

2019
The King Of Rugby League Award: James Tedesco
Rookie Of The Year: Payne Hass
Team Of The Year: Sydney Roosters
Representative Player Of The Year: James Tedesco
Biggest Story: Sonny Bill Williams Signs With Toronto Wolfpack

2018
The King Of Rugby League Award: Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
Rookie Of The Year: Jamayne Isaako
Team Of The Year: Sydney Roosters
Representative Player Of The Year: Valentine Holmes
Biggest Story: Cooper Cronk plays in the Grand Final with a broken clavicle

2017
The King Of Rugby League Award: Jason Taumalolo
Rookie Of The Year: Nick Cotric
Team Of The Year: Tonga
Representative Player Of The Year: Jason Taumalolo
Biggest Story: Tonga join the top sides in international Rugby League

2016
The King Of Rugby League Award: Cameron Smith
Rookie Of The Year: Suliasi Vunivalu
Team Of The Year: Queensland
Representative Player Of The Year: Cameron Smith
Biggest Story: The Cronulla Sharks break through to win their first Grand Final

2015
The King Of Rugby League Award: Johnathan Thurston
Rookie Of The Year: Jack Bird
Team Of The Year: North Queensland Cowboys
Representative Player Of The Year: Johnathan Thurston
Biggest Story: Cowboys win one of the great Grand Finals

2014
The King Of Rugby League Award: Greg Inglis
Rookie Of The Year: Luke Brooks
Team Of The Year: South Sydney
Representative Player Of The Year: Jarryd Hayne
Biggest Story: South Sydney are back on top!

2013
The King Of Rugby League Award: Greg Inglis
Rookie Of The Year: George Burgess
Team Of The Year: Australian Kangaroo’s
Representative Player Of The Year: Cameron Smith
Biggest Story: The ASADA Investigation

2012
The King Of Rugby League Award: Greg Inglis
Rookie Of The Year: Adam Reynolds
Team Of The Year: Melbourne Storm
Representative Player Of The Year: James Tamou
Biggest Story: The Formation Of The Australian Rugby League Comission

2011
The King Of Rugby League Award: Paul Gallen
Rookie Of The Year: Shaun Johnson
Team Of The Year: Melbourne Storm
Representative Player Of The Year: Paul Gallen
Biggest Story: The Implosion Of The Manly Sea Eagles After Winning The Grand Final

2010
The King Of Rugby League Award: Benji Marshall
Rookie Of The Year: Matt Gillett
Team Of The Year: Wigan Warriors
Representative Player Of The Year: Billy Slater
Biggest Story: The Melbourne Storm Lose Previous Titles After Salary Cap Rorts Are Revealed

2009
The King Of Rugby League Award: Billy Slater
Rookie Of The Year: Jamal Idris
Team Of The Year: Melbourne Storm
Representative Player Of The Year: Greg Inglis
Biggest Story: Poor Player Behaviour Tears Apart The Cronulla Sharks And Sydney Roosters

2008
The King Of Rugby League Award: Billy Slater
Rookie Of The Year: Michael Jennings
Team Of The Year: Manly Sea Eagles
Representative Player Of The Year: Israel Folau
Biggest Story: New Zealand Beats Australia In The World Cup Final

2007
The King Of Rugby League Award: Matthew Bowen
Rookie Of The Year: Israel Folau
Team Of The Year: Melbourne Storm
Representative Player Of The Year: Cameron Smith
Biggest Story: Andrew Johns Retirement/Admition Of Drug Use

2006
The King Of Rugby League Award: Darren Lockyer
Rookie Of The Year: Jarryd Hayne
Team Of The Year: Melbourne Storm
Representative Player Of The Year: Darren Lockyer
Biggest Story: Queensland Back From The Dead To Win The State Of Origin Series

2005
The King Of Rugby League Award: Andrew Johns
Rookie Of The Year: Greg Inglis
Team Of The Year: Wests Tigers
Representative Player Of The Year: Andrew Johns
Biggest Story: New Zealand Beat Australia To Win 2005 Tri Series/Andrew Johns Origin Return

2004
The King Of Rugby League Award: Danny Buderus
Rookie Of The Year: Karmichael Hunt
Team Of The Year: Canterbury Bulldogs
Representative Player Of The Year: Danny Buderus
Biggest Story: Rape Allegations Leveled At The Canterbury Bulldogs club.

2003
The King Of Rugby League Award: Darren Lockyer
Rookie Of The Year: Billy Slater
Team Of The Year: Penrith Panthers
Representative Player Of The Year: Darren Lockyer
Biggest Story: The Penrith Panthers Fairytale Season Caps Of A Great Year Of The Game

2002
The King Of Rugby League Award: Andrew Johns
Rookie Of The Year: Matt Utai
Team Of The Year: Sydney Roosters
Representative Player Of The Year: Andrew Johns
Biggest Story: Canterbury Bulldogs Caught Cheating The Salary Cap

2001
The King Of Rugby League Award: Andrew Johns
Rookie Of The Year: Braith Anasta
Team Of The Year: Parramatta Eels
Representative Player Of The Year: Shane Webcke
Biggest Story: South Sydney Reinstated Into The NRL/Parramatta’s Choke In The Grand Final

2000
The King Of Rugby League Award: Brad Fittler
Rookie Of The Year: Mark Gasnier
Team Of The Year: Brisbane Broncos
Representative Player Of The Year: Ryan Girdler
Biggest Story: The Disastrous Rugby League World Cup

1999
The King Of Rugby League Award: Andrew Johns
Rookie Of The Year: Luke Burt
Team Of The Year: Melbourne Storm
Representative Player Of The Year: Wendell Sailor
Biggest Story: The Melbourne Storm win an improbable Grand Final in just their second season

1998
The King Of Rugby League Award: Andrew Johns
Rookie Of The Year: Nathan Hindmarsh
Team Of The Year: Brisbane Broncos
Representative Player Of The Year: Kevin Walters
Biggest Story: A united competition once again

1997
The King Of Rugby League Award: Brad Fittler
Rookie Of The Year: Luke Priddis
Team Of The Year: Newcastle Knights
Representative Player Of The Year: Brad Fittler
Biggest Story: The height of The Super League War

1996
The King Of Rugby League Award: Cliff Lyons
Rookie Of The Year: Craig Gower
Team Of The Year: New South Wales Blues
Representative Player Of The Year: Brad Fittler
Biggest Story: The last year of a united competition

1995
The King Of Rugby League Award: Brad Fittler
Rookie Of The Year: Matt Rogers
Team Of The Year: Queensland Maroons
Representative Player Of The Year: Brad Fittler
Biggest Story: Weakened Australia Wins The Rugby League World Cup

1994
The King Of Rugby League Award: Brett Mullins
Rookie Of The Year: Matt Sears
Team Of The Year: Canberra Raiders
Representative Player Of The Year: Laurie Daley
Biggest Story: The start of The Super League War

1993
The King Of Rugby League Award: Ricky Stuart
Rookie Of The Year: Jack Elsegood
Team Of The Year: Brisbane Broncos
Representative Player Of The Year:
Biggest Story: The Brisbane Broncos god back-to-back

*The King Of Rugby League award winners must be the most outstanding player over the course of the year in club and representative football.

*Team of the year award is given to the team that have been the best over the course of the entire season. It is not just handed to the Grand Final winners.

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