In Monte Carlo last month, Ange Capuozzo was named World Rugby Men’s Breakthrough Player of the Year in partnership with Tudor, while Ruby Tui became the first ever recipient of the women’s award.

Both players were hugely deserving of their accolades. Tui was the face and voice of New Zealand’s Rugby World Cup 2021 campaign, scoring five tries as the Black Ferns became the first host nation to lift the women’s title.

Capuozzo, meanwhile, created the try that sealed Italy’s first win against Wales in a men’s test for 15 years before crossing the whitewash twice when the Azzurri secured a maiden victory against Australia last month.

As Tui and Capuozzo clear some space on their mantle pieces to make room for their awards, we look back at six previous winners to see what happened to their careers.

Gavin Henson (2001)

Welshman Gavin Henson became the first winner of the award, the IRB Young Player of the Year as it was known in 2001, having made his test debut for Wales that year against Japan.

Henson made his first test start, at fly-half, in an 81-9 defeat of Romania in Cardiff that September, but it would be three years before he became a regular for his country.

A mercurial talent, he showcased that ability in narrow defeats to South Africa and New Zealand in 2004 and the following year announced himself to the world with the winning kick as Wales beat England 11-9 in Cardiff to kickstart their Grand Slam campaign.

Henson toured New Zealand with the British and Irish Lions in 2005 and was a member of the Wales squad that won a Six Nations Grand Slam in 2008 however, he never played at a Rugby World Cup.

Jerome Kaino (2004)

Following his contribution to New Zealand’s success at the IRB Under-21 World Championship in 2004, Jerome Kaino was named IRB International U21 Player of the Year.

Kaino started all five of New Zealand’s matches in Scotland, scoring five tries, including braces against both England and South Africa.

He made his senior international debut against the Barbarians in December that year, and having represented his country on the IRB Sevens World Series in 2005, won his first test cap against Ireland in June 2006.

It was the start of an 11-year test career in which the back-row helped the All Blacks win five Tri Nations/The Rugby Championship titles and back-to-back Rugby World Cups in 2011 and 2015.

Julian Savea (2010)

Julian Savea was already a sevens international by the time he helped New Zealand win the IRB Junior World Championship 2010, scoring eight tries in only four matches in Argentina.

Recognition as the IRB Junior Player of the Year followed New Zealand’s 62-17 defeat of Australia in the final and it was only a matter of time before he transferred his try-scoring ability onto the test stage.

Savea marked his test debut with a hat-trick against Ireland in June 2012 and crossed the whitewash 12 times in his first nine caps for the All Blacks.

In total he scored 46 tries in 54 test appearances for his country, playing the full 80 minutes as New Zealand beat the Wallabies in the RWC 2015 final at Twickenham.

George Ford (2011)

Despite narrowly losing the IRB Junior World Championship final to New Zealand, England’s George Ford succeeded Savea as IRB Junior Player of the Year in 2011.

Ford scored 51 points in five appearances at the tournament, however, he would have to wait until 2014 to make his senior test debut, largely due to the form of his good friend and England age-grade team-mate Owen Farrell.

He would go on to form a successful 10-12 partnership with Farrell for his country, particularly in the early reign of Eddie Jones, winning the men’s Six Nations in 2016, 2017 and 2020.

Ford has also represented England at two Rugby World Cups, starting at fly-half as his country lost the RWC 2019 final to South Africa in Yokohama. To date, he has played 81 tests, five as captain, and scored 308 points.

Handré Pollard (2014)

South Africa fly-half Handré Pollard was named IRB Junior Player of the Year in 2014, having steered his side to the final of the IRB Junior World Championship in Auckland.

Pollard scored 65 points at the tournament in New Zealand but missed a late drop goal and was unable to prevent South Africa slipping to an agonising 21-20 defeat to England in the final.

Just eight days later, Pollard started his first test match in the Springbok jersey, scoring 13 points to help beat Scotland 55-6 in Port Elizabeth.

It was the beginning of a fruitful international career, the highlight of which came in Yokohama three years ago when he scored 22 points to help the Springboks beat England 32-12 in the RWC 2019 final. To date he has scored 665 points in 65 test appearances.

Romain Ntamack (2019)

Son of French rugby royalty, Romain Ntamack was named World Rugby Breakthrough Player of the Year in association with Tudor following a successful first year in test rugby.

Ntamack had led France to the World Rugby U20 Championship 2018 title, playing primarily as a centre but it was at fly-half that he made his mark as a senior international.

He assumed the number 10 jersey during the men’s Six Nations 2019 and steered Les Bleus to the quarter-finals of RWC 2019 in Japan.

Since then Ntamack has formed an impressive half-back partnership with Antoine Dupont for both Toulouse and France and will hope to make his mark on a home Rugby World Cup next year. In three years as a test player, he has scored 145 points in 31 appearances.