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Owen Farrell is the only English candidate for top European award

Players from Irish and French teams dominate the nominations.

Owen Farrell is the only English presence on the list of nominees announced for European player of the year for 2018.

The 15 names in contention are dominated by teams from Ireland and France while Saracens’ playmaker Farrell – the current holder of the award – the solitary representative from the Aviva Premiership.

Saracens are the only English club to have reached the quarter-finals and progressed in the closing exchanges of the final round on the strength of finishing as one of three best runners-up.

The list will be reduced to five players after the semi-finals in April before the winner is announced after the final on May 12.

Nominees: Tadhg Beirne (Scarlets), Levani Botia (La Rochelle), Gareth Davies (Scarlets), Scott Fardy (Leinster Rugby), Owen Farrell (Saracens), Tadhg Furlong (Leinster Rugby), Conor Murray (Munster Rugby), Isa Nacewa (Leinster Rugby), Leone Nakarawa (Racing 92), Morgan Parra (ASM Clermont Auvergne), Dany Priso (La Rochelle), Alivereti Raka (ASM Clermont Auvergne), Jonathan Sexton (Leinster Rugby), Josua Tuisova (RC Toulon), Victor Vito (La Rochelle).

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