Dugan, Gallen share NRL.com's Player of the Year Award

They might not be lining up on Sunday in the grand final but Raiders fullback Josh Dugan and Sharks enforcer Paul Gallen have reason to smile after being named joint-winners of the NRL.com Player of the Year Award.<br><br>Judged on a 3-2-1 basis throughout the regular season by NRL.com’s experts, the award is recognition of consistency in individual performance. And befitting the banner NRL year, the award is shared by two players for the first time. <br><br>Jamie Soward won the inaugural gong in 2007 before Jarryd Hayne added it to his massive 2009 haul of honours. <br><br>Gallen and Dugan polled an impressive 27 points for the year; two points clear of Rabbitohs hooker Issac Luke, Wests Tigers hooker Robbie Farah and Roosters Dally M Medal winner Todd Carney. <br><br>One point further back were Dragons grand final fullback Darius Boyd and the Eels’ Hayne. <br><br>“It’s a really good honour and it’s always nice to be recognised for your hard work especially in a format where it is judged every week,” Gallen told NRL.com when told of his victory. &nbsp;<br><br>“To tie with a player like Josh Dugan is great – obviously he is a lot flashier than I am as a player and he does plenty of good things that get recognised. And the Raiders had a very strong finish to the year.<br><br>“I guess we had a few good games this year and when we won we won pretty well, which probably helped my cause. Also, as a team we might have got smashed in a few games but we also had plenty of tight ones where we were very competitive. All I tried to do all year was work hard and while it was a tough year, this recognition is nice at the end of it.<br><br>“It was good to see some improvement in our play late in the year but the hard part about first grade is being able to lift and play at a high level for at least sections of five and six weeks in a row, not just every so often. We need to learn to be more consistent. With Jeremy Smith, Wade Graham, Colin Best and a few other new faces, hopefully we can learn to do that.”<br><br>As winners, Dugan and Gallen were automatic entries into the NRL.com Team of the Year at fullback and lock respectively. <br><br>As for other positions, Warriors giant Manu Vatuvei takes one wing spot, while Penrith’s State of Origin flyer Michael Gordon snagged the other. <br><br>Storm star and Brisbane recruit Greg Inglis and the most improved player in the NRL, Rooster Shaun Kenny-Dowall, grabbed the centre spots. <br><br>Carney takes the five-eighth position and Gold Coast captain Scott Prince is his halves partner in the No.7.<br><br>The second row comprises Sea Eagle Anthony Watmough and the Wests Tigers’ English import Gareth Ellis.<br><br>At prop, Brisbane tyro Sam Thaiday makes an appearance along with Raiders and now Origin and Test regular David Shillington. <br><br>Farah takes the hooking role on a count-back over Luke, having tallied more man-of-the-match awards throughout the year.<br><br>“It sounds like a pretty good team – a good one to play in, I reckon!” Gallen added.<br><br><b>TOP 10</b><br>=1. Paul Gallen (Cronulla Sharks) – 27 points<br>=1. Josh Dugan (Canberra Raiders) – 27 points<br>=3. Issac Luke (South Sydney Rabbitohs) – 25 points<br>=3. Robbie Farah (Wests Tigers) – 25 points<br>=3. Todd Carney (Sydney Roosters) – 25 points<br>=6. Darius Boyd (St George Illawarra Dragons) – 24 points<br>=6. Jarryd Hayne (Parramatta Eels) – 24 points<br>8. Scott Prince (Gold Coast Titans) – 23 points<br>9. Kurt Gidley (Newcastle Knights) – 20 points<br>=10. Michael Gordon (Penrith) – 18 points<br>=10. Gareth Ellis (Wests Tigers) – 18 points<br>=10. David Shillington (Canberra Raiders) – 18 points<br>=10. Anthony Watmough (Manly Sea Eagles) – 18 points<br><br><b>TEAM OF THE YEAR</b><br>1 Josh Dugan<br>2 Manu Vatuvei<br>3 Shaun Kenny-Dowall<br>4 Greg Inglis<br>5 Michael Gordon<br>6 Todd Carney<br>7 Scott Prince<br>8 Sam Thaiday<br>9 Robbie Farah<br>10 David Shillington<br>11 Gareth Ellis<br>12 Anthony Watmough<br>13. Paul Gallen<br><br><b>YOUR CLUB’S TOP SCORER</b><br>SHARKS: Paul Gallen (27)<br>RAIDERS: Josh Dugan (27)<br>RABBITOHS: Issac Luke (25)<br>WESTS TIGERS: Robbie Farah (25)<br>ROOSTERS: Todd Carney (25)<br>EELS: Jarryd Hayne (24)<br>DRAGONS: Darius Boyd (24)<br>TITANS: Scott Prince (23)<br>KNIGHTS: Kurt Gidley (20)<br>PANTHERS: Michael Gordon (18)<br>SEA EAGLES: Anthony Watmough (18)<br>BRONCOS: Corey Parker (16)<br>WARRIORS: Lance Hohaia (16)<br>STORM: Billy Slater (15)<br>BULLDOGS: Jamal Idris (13)<br>COWBOYS: Johnathan Thurston (11)