The 21-year-old, who missed the Guinness PRO14 Final through injury, played his part in Leinster’s title-winning campaign appearing in 11 games as the back rower finished joint top try-scorer with nine tries.
A pool of 75-plus media from across the UK, Ireland, Italy and South Africa including reporters, broadcasters, former players and coaches were invited to vote for the Next-Gen Star of the Season award.
Penny saw off stiff competition from Munster pair Gavin Coombes and Craig Casey, Glasgow Warriors’ Jamie Dobie and Scarlets’ Jac Morgan.
Penny’s win caps a remarkable run for Leinster, who have claimed four of the previous five Next-Gen Star awards since 2017.
Previous Next-Gen Stars
2019/20: Caelan Doris (Leinster)
2018/19: Adam Hastings (Glasgow Warriors)
2017/18: Jordan Larmour (Leinster)
2016/17: Joey Carbery (Leinster)
2015/16: Sam Davies (Ospreys)
2014/15: Sam Hidalgo-Clyne (Edinburgh)
2013/14: Jonny Gray (Glasgow Warriors)
2012/13: Luke Marshall (Ulster)
2011/12: Stuart Hogg (Glasgow Warriors)
2010/11: Toby Faletau (Dragons)
2009/10: Tim Visser (Edinburgh)Brok Harris takes Tackle Machine accolade
Dragons’ front rower Brok Harris has become the latest winner of the Tackle Machine award boasting an impressive 97.6% success rate for the 2020/21 season.
The award is given to the player who has made 150 tackles or more and set the highest completion percentage. The 36-year-old South African has been ever-present for his region in this campaign and took the title ahead of Glasgow Warriors’ Thomos Gordon (97.1%) while Cardiff Blues’ flanker Josh Turnbull (93.5%) managed to break the 200-barrier for total tackles.
Harris also completed another milestone during the campaign, playing his 100th Guinness PRO14 game in December against Cardiff Blues.
Previous Tackle Machine winners:
2019/20: Paul Boyle (Connacht) – 98.3%
2018/19: James King (Ospreys) – 96.6%
2017/18: Olly Robinson (Cardiff Blues) – 94.6%
Of the trio Penny scored the most in home fixtures (6) while Coetzee and Wootton both scored more away from home (5). The first 40 minutes proved the most decisive for all three players with 20 of the 27 tries being scored in the first half – Wootton (8), Coetzee (6), Penny (6).
Previous Top Try Scorers
2019/20: Rhyno Smyth (Toyota Cheetahs) – 10
2018/19: Rabz Maxwane (Toyota Cheetahs) – 14
2017/18: Barry Daly (Leinster) – 12
2016/17: Steff Evans (Scarlets) – 13
2015/16: Matt Healy (Connacht) – 10
2014/15: Rhys Webb (Ospreys) – 12
2013/14: Gareth Davies (Scarlets) – 10
2012/13: Tim Visser (Edinburgh) – 11
2011/12: Tim Visser (Edinburgh) – 13
2010/11: Tim Visser (Edinburgh) – 14
2009/10: Tim Visser (Edinburgh) – 10
2008/09: Thom Evans (Glasgow Warriors) – 9
2007/08: Tom James (Cardiff Blues) – 8
2006/07: Darren Daniel, Barry Davies (Scarlets), Jamie Heaslip (Leinster), Andrew Trimble (Ulster) – all 7
2005/06: Tommy Bowe (Ulster), Jason Forster (Dragons) – both 10
2004/05: Kevin Morgan (Dragons) – 12
2003/04: Jamie Robinson (Cardiff Blues) – 12
2002/03: Mossie Lawlor, Mike Mullins (Munster), Craig Morgan (Cardiff RFC) – all 6
2001/02: Girvan Dempsey and Denis Hickie – both 7Ashton Hewitt scoops Ironman award
Dragons winger Ashton Hewitt has earned the right to be called the Ironman of the 2020/21 Guinness PRO14 season having clocked up an impressive 1,200 minutes of action over 16 rounds.
Hewitt, who scored five tries, topped the charts for Defenders Beaten (52) and came second for Clean Breaks (20), started and finished 15 of Dragons 16 games in the Guinness PRO14 during the campaign. Hewitt was a constant threat in the region’s attacking game as he also came in the Top 10 for Offloads with 11.Myler scoops Gilbert Golden Boot
Ospreys’ fly-half Stephen Myler’s 86.05% accuracy from the kicking tee has earned him the Gilbert Golden Boot for the 2020/21 Guinness PRO14 campaign.
Players who attempted 25 kicks or more were ranked based on their success percentage and Myler’s closest rival was Leinster’s Harry Byrne (85.71%).
Myler attempted 43 kicks at goal and scored from 37. He scored 17 of 22 conversions and 20 of 21 penalty attempts. Leinster’s Ross Byrne actually hit 100% of his kicks (21) but did not take enough attempts to qualify for the award (minimum of 25 required).Coetzee Named Players' Player
Ulster and Springbok No 8 Marcell Coetzee has been voted in as the Guinness PRO14 Player’s Player of the Season for 2020/21.
Coetzee has delivered stellar performances for Ulster throughout the Guinness PRO14 campaign by sharing the top try-scorer title (9), ranking first for offloads (20) while also ranking in the top five for successful carries (67) and claiming 95% success in his 105 tackles.
The 29-year-old was voted in by his fellow players with all captains and vice-captains in the Guinness PRO14 casting their ballots for the award. Coetzee, who has won 30 caps for South Africa, is the latest winner of the prestigious award which has most recently been won by Duhan van der Merwe, Bill Mata (both Edinburgh), Tadhg Beirne (Scarlets), Charles Piutau (Ulster) and Bundee Aki (Connacht).