5 Sep 2012

Barba sweeps Dally M awards night

6:27 am on 5 September 2012

Ben Barba's untouchable form this National Rugby League season was capped off with an incredible five awards at Tuesday night's Dally M awards, including the top gong.

The South Sydney halfback Adam Reynolds landed the rookie of the year award, while the Bulldogs mentor Des Hasler was named coach of the year.

Barba's recognition as the competition's best player was never in doubt with the Canterbury Bulldogs fullback finishing six points clear of second-placed Matt Bowen with a staggering 32 points.

In the truest example of Barba's exceptional year, the 23-year-old also went home as the fullback of the year, the Provan-Summons medallist, equal top try-scorer and winner of the Peter Frilingos headline moment.

During Canterbury's 12-game winning streak which set up their minor premiership, Barba polled regularly.

In the six games between rounds 18 and 23 Barba picked up 14 of a possible 18 points to put his place as the game's most exciting player beyond doubt.

He scored 21 tries, equal with North Queensland's Ash Graham, is the team's chief playmaker and has pulled off a string of outstanding defensive plays.

Barba tallied a commanding 32 votes, clear of Cowboys stars Bowen (26) and Johnathan Thurston (24) as well as Melbourne's Cooper Cronk (25).