Melbourne Storm prop Jesse Bromwich says joining the illustrious group of players who have received the Kiwis Player of the Year award was a humbling experience.
In Auckland for the Downer NRL Auckland Nines, 26-year-old Bromwich was present to accept his award last week while sons Eli, 4, and Isaac, 1, watched on from the crowd.
Bromwich – who last year was also named in the World XIII and NRL.com's Team of the Year – beat out Storm teammate Tohu Harris and fullback Roger Tuivasa-Sheck for the New Zealand gong.
"It is very special and humbling at the same time, there were some awesome players up for the accolade, so it's very cool," Bromwich told NRL.com.
"I looked at the back of the trophy and it had all the names on it like Ruben Wiki, Sonny-Bill Williams and Simon Mannering, to be on the same trophy as them is amazing.
"I have been lucky enough to win the Player of the Year with our club two years in a row and to be New Zealand Player of the Year is a huge honour too.
"The other night it was a bit hard to believe I was up on the stage talking to the crowd, but I am very honoured and proud.
"It was great to be at home and at the awards and then come back to my junior club the Manurewa Marlins to celebrate with friends and family."
In a 2015 season where he appeared in all 26 of Melbourne's matches, Bromwich finished second overall in the NRL for most carries of the ball, total running metres and hit-ups.
He backed that up by playing in each of the Kiwis' four matches on their tour of England at the end of the year.
"I definitely think the last two years have been the best in my career," Bromwich said.
"It was nice to have some time off after the UK tour, I flew straight back to New Zealand from England and just stayed there the whole time.
"Both my grandparents are in New Zealand, almost my entire family is there, and my partner is a Kiwi.
"I have two kids as well so I need to expose them to the Kiwi lifestyle and all of the Maori culture as well."
Bromwich featured in the Storm squad which powered through to the semi-finals at the Nines, alongside brother Kenny.