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Masi named Six Nations best player

Italy full-back Andrea Masi has been voted 2011 RBS 6 Nations player of the championship.

It is the first time an Italian has received the honour, which is decided by supporters with over 17,000 casting votes.

Masi was a key figure in the Azzurri's shock 22-21 victory over France, their first Six Nations triumph against Les Bleus, scoring a try and finishing man of the match.

"It has been a championship of highs and lows for the Italian team," said Masi.

"Our win against France will go down in rugby history but to finish sixth frustrated us all.

"However, to be named player of the championship is a fantastic way to end what has been one of the most competitive championships I can remember.

"We have worked hard this year and can be proud of our achievements.

"Italian rugby continues to strengthen and we are very happy with our progress as a team.

"To be the first Italian voted to win this award by the fans is a huge compliment."

The shortlist only comprised of winners of the man of the match awards from the first four rounds of the Six Nations.

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