Fifita Dally M Prop of the Year

Sharks star Andrew Fifita was last night named Prop of the Year at the annual Dally M Awards night.
A contender for the major prize, Fifita was a standout performer amongst the front rowers in the NRL in 2018 and was a worthy inclusion in the NRL's Team of the Year.

While Fifita collected an accolade for his efforts, Valentine Holmes walked away empty handed despite a season in which many good judges had predicted him to challenge for the Player of the Year award.

And they were almost correct in their forecast's, with Holmes finishing fourth on the final count, behind 2018 Dally M winner Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, runner-up Kaylyn Ponga and Tigers halfback Luke Brooks.

Tuivasa-Sheck polled 29 points, two ahead of Ponga, with Brooks on 26 and Holmes, after a fast finish to the season, next on 25.

Holmes was also edged out of the Team of the Year, with Tuivasa-Sheck named the fullback, while Warrior David Fusitu'a in scoring 22 tries was one better than Holmes on the season in claiming the Ken Irvine Medal as the leading try scorer.

But there was no taking away from Fifita, who was in dynamic form early in the year, leading the Sharks forward pack in the absence of Paul Gallen, Wade Graham and Luke Lewis when the experienced trio were sideline for various periods through injury.

Joining Fifita and Tuivasa-Sheck in the Team of the Year were Blake Ferguson (wing), Joseph Leilua (centre), Cameron Munster (five eighth), Brooks (half back), Jason Taumalolo (lock), Josh Jackson (second row), Damian Cook (hooker) and Jazz Tevaga (interchange).

Attending the awards ceremony on behalf of the Sharks were Fifita, Holmes, Gallen, Aaron Woods, Jesse Ramien, who was a nominee for Rookie of the Year, Football CEO Barry Russell and Chairman Dino Mezzatesta.