Northampton Saints’ Cobus Reinach was today credited with “revitalising” his club after being named Gallagher Premiership Rugby Player of the Month for December 2018.
The South African scrum-half hit world-class form last month scoring two unforgettable tries as the Saints claimed back-to-back victories against Exeter Chiefs and Worcester Warriors.
“He is the ‘in form’ No. 9 in Gallagher Premiership Rugby at the moment and incredibly important to Northampton Saints,” said Ugo Monye, the former Harlequins, England and Lions wing, who has seen Reinach close up in his role with BT Sport.
“He has revitalised them and we know how competitive this league is with everyone being able to beat everyone, but the back-to-back performances against Worcester away and Exeter at home, especially scoring two intercepted tries, were so impressive.
“When you get a result against one of the top two teams, it gives you more than just a win – it gives you confidence that you can go toe-to-toe with the very best.
“If you are able to put on that level of performance, you need your top players and we know how important your No. 9 is to do that.
“For me the impact that Cobus Reinach is having on the team — considering where Northampton were — has been incredible.”
Everyone remembers Reinach for his spectacular tries in December but Monye appreciates his crucial defensive work too.
Monye added: “It’s not just all about his attacking sense; defensively he is just as good. It wasn’t only the magnitude of the victories Saints secured, but also the key moments Reinach had such as the cover tackle on Bryce Heem against Worcester, which completely changed the energy of that game.
“If Heem had scored, Worcester would have been comfortable and potentially winning, but that cover tackle, an intercept and the match-winning points against top of the table Exeter, make Reinach stand out.”
Reinach was presented with his award by Gallagher Community Hero, Claire Jones (above), who is the club photographer at Saints.
Claire was one of 24 Community Heroes chosen by new title partner, Gallagher, at the start of the 2018-19 season. Each of the heroes was nominated by their respective Gallagher Premiership Rugby teams for demonstrating the core values of their rugby family. This season, Claire is fundraising for Northampton Saints Wheelchair Rugby team by selling her photos of Northampton Saints she has taken over the years, travelling home and away to every game – and every penny raised will go towards the team.
Claire Jones said: “I was delighted to present Cobus with his much deserved Player of the Month award – he was outstanding in December and kept me very busy behind the lens. And I’d also like to thank Gallagher for asking me to present the award. It’s great to see the new title-partner of Premiership Rugby giving opportunities like this to those of us in the wider off-the-pitch rugby community.”
Throughout the season Gallagher will continue to shine a light on its Community Heroes, whilst embarking on a series of CSR initiatives that form part of its ongoing commitment to champion the spirit of rugby, on and off the pitch. Alongside Premiership Rugby, Gallagher – a passionate community insurance broker with more than 50 retail branches around the UK – will continue to recognize and highlight the positive work that is being done around the game, both at scale and within the local communities.
Reinach – as part of his prize for being named Gallagher Premiership Rugby Player of the Month – wins 25 tickets to a future Northampton Saints match to be gifted to a local club, school or community group of his choice.
Reinach was judged by a panel of experts as the player who made the biggest impact in Gallagher Premiership Rugby over the month of December.
He was involved in a three-way battle to win the award eventually beating Sale Sharks scrum-half Faf de Klerk and Harlequins blindside Alex Dombrandt to the title.
Reinach was voted for by a panel of media professionals based on his performances in December, alongside a public poll which drew more than 2,000 votes on the Premiership Rugby app. The judges were: Nick Mullins (BT Sport), Alastair Eykyn (BT Sport), Mick Cleary (The Daily Telegraph), Sarah Mockford (Rugby World), Jonny Fordham (The Sun), Robert Kitson (The Guardian), Chris Jones (BBC 5 Live), David Rogers (Getty Images) and Tom Hamilton (ESPN). The panel was chaired by Paul Morgan, Premiership Rugby’s Communications Director.
Winners in the 2018-19 season
December – Cobus Reinach (Northampton Saints)
November – Ollie Thorley (Gloucester Rugby)
October – Alex Goode (Saracens)
September – Danny Cipriani (Gloucester Rugby)
Winners in the 2017-18 season
April – Vereniki Goneva (Newcastle Falcons)
March – Joe Simmonds (Exeter Chiefs)
February – Jack Willis (Wasps)
December – Josh Adams (Worcester Warriors)
November – Ruan Ackermann (Gloucester Rugby)
October – Jonny May (Leicester Tigers)
September – Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
Winners in the 2016-17 season
April – Taulupe Faletau (Bath Rugby)
March – Christian Wade (Wasps)
February – James Short (Exeter Chiefs)
December – Tom Varndell (Bristol Rugby)
November – Freddie Burns (Leicester Tigers)
October – Mako Vunipola (Saracens)
September – Jimmy Gopperth (Wasps)
Winners in the 2015-16 season
October – Nick Evans (Harlequins)
November – Nathan Hughes (Wasps)
December – Maro Itoje (Saracens)
January – Thomas Waldrom (Exeter Chiefs)
February – George Smith (Wasps)
March – Francois Hougaard (Worcester Warriors)
April – Teimana Harrison (Northampton Saints)
Winners in the 2014-15 season
September – Kyle Eastmond (Bath Rugby)
October – Semesa Rokoduguni (Bath Rugby)
November – Thomas Waldrom (Exeter Chiefs)
December – Samu Manoa (Northampton Saints)
January – Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby)
February – Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
March – Elliot Daly (Wasps)
April – Joe Simpson (Wasps)
Winners in the 2013-14 season
September – Jacques Burger (Saracens)
October – Samu Manoa (Northampton Saints)
November – George Ford (Bath Rugby)
December – Nick Easter (Harlequins)
January – Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints)
February – Vereniki Goneva (Leicester Tigers)
March – Danny Cipriani (Sale Sharks)
April – Chris Ashton (Saracens)