18 Nov 2008

Vatuvei only Kiwi in Team of Year

6:19 am on 18 November 2008

The Warriors wing Manu Vatuvei is the only Kiwi in the the Rugby League International Federation's

Team of the Year named last night in Brisbane.

The team of 10 players is dominated by the Melbourne Storm, whose fullback Billy Slater is the Federation's inaugural player of the year.

Slater is joined by five-eighth Greg Inglis, hooker Cameron Smith and centre Israel Folau, who was also named rookie of the year.

Former players and league reporters from Australia, New Zealand and the UK also named Scott Prince and Anthony Laffranchi from the Gold Coast, Cronulla's Paul Gallen, Gareth Ellis of Leeds and James Grant from St Helens.

Manly's premiership-winning Des Hasler was named Coach of the Year at Suncorp Stadium, the venue for the World Cup final between Australia and New Zealand on Saturday night.