Issued on behalf of The Greene King IPA Championship by Nicol McClelland
The shortlist for the inaugural Greene King IPA Championship Player of the Month has today been unveiled.
Selected by a panel of regional and national journalist covering all 12 Championship clubs, the nominations reflect the geographical spread of the competition, with players from Jersey, Bristol Rugby, Worcester, London Scottish and Doncaster Knights.
It's now down to supporters to vote for their overall favourite. Visit EnglandRugby.com to choose the winning player, who will be given the honour of being named the player of the month as well as a Greene King IPA magnum.
Everybody who votes during the competition will be automatically entered into a free prize draw to win a day at Twickenham for them and up to nine friends. The prize includes exclusive access to the hallowed turf for a day of touch rugby in May, followed by a pitch-side BBQ.
September Player of the Month shortlist
Dougie Flockhart (Doncaster Knights)
Mark Bright (London Scottish)
Matthew Morgan (Bristol Rugby)
Mike Williams (Worcester Warriors)
Tommy Bell (Jersey RFC)
Following last Friday night's clash between their respective sides, Mark Bright of London Scottish and Bristol's Matthew Morgan are included in the shortlist of nominees.
Nominated for the 2013/14 Championship Player of the Season, 36 year-old Bright joined London Scottish from Redruth in 2011, taking over the captaincy reigns. The New Zealand born back row forward was named in last season's Championship Dream XV, and was also named player of the season in the club's own awards. A dynamic ball carrier, Bright has played 74 games for London Scottish since joining in 2011, scoring 41 tries in the process.
Welsh international Matthew Morgan represents the table toppers in the September Player of the Month nominees, having made an impactful start to his season at Bristol Rugby. Racking up a tally of 51 points, including one try, six penalties and nine conversions, the 22 year old was named Man of the Match following his impressive debut performance against Worcester Warriors on September 7.
Representing the competition's new contingent are Dougie Flockhart of Doncaster Knights and Mike Williams from Worcester Warriors.
Former rugby league player Flockhart was instrumental in Doncaster's promotion back to the Greene King IPA Championship, hauling in 237 points across the 2013/14 season. His abilities have continued into the professional second tier, proving significant in the Knights' three wins from four, including kicking six successful penalties to see Doncaster come from 18-7 behind to seal victory over Jersey in Round 2. In his latest performance, the wing scored a try, three conversions and two penalties to help Doncaster in their victory over last season's semi-finalists Yorkshire Carnegie.
Warriors' Mike Williams also impressed the panel during September with his huge ball-carrying ability, superb work at the lineout and relentless work rate.
The 21-year-old Zimbabwean signed for Warriors after five years with The Sharks in Natal, joining Sixways as a lock in 2013. Since then, he has moved to flanker and flourished, opening his debut Championship season with a try against Bristol Rugby. Williams – who is a qualified EQP player– has appeared in all four of Warriors Championship fixtures.
Finally, Jersey's Tommy Bell completes the inaugural Championship Player of the Month shortlist after a series of impressive performances for the Islanders. Named man of the match following his two try, 24-point display over Nottingham Rugby, the former England U20 full back was also awarded the same honour for his efforts against Doncaster in Round 2.
Voting will open on Monday September 29 and close at midday on Thursday, October 2. The winner will be announced on Friday, October 3.
To vote for your Greene King IPA Championship September Player of the Month, visit EnglandRugby.com
Everybody who votes during the competition will be automatically entered into a free prize draw to win a day at Twickenham for them and up to nine friends.