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Fiji wing wins French rugby award

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PARIS, France -- Fiji wing Rupeni Caucaunibuca of Agen has been named France's rugby player of the year after being crowned best try scorer of the French championship for the last two seasons.

The 26-year-old Caucaunibuca is one of the fastest and most flamboyant players in international rugby but his career has been marred by a lack of discipline.

The Fiji Rugby Union banned him for one year at the end of the 2004/2005 season for failing to report for selection.

He is still to return to Agen since he went back to Fiji at the end of last season, claiming he had contracted a tropical virus and, later, that he wanted to be with his wife for the birth of their child.

The French international player of the year award goes to Toulouse center Florian Fritz during the "Night of Rugby" organised by the National Rugby League, the players' union and the coaches' association.

Stade Francais flyhalf Lionel Beauxis, who scored all France's points in their 24-13 win over South Africa in the final of the under-21 World Cup, was elected newcomer of the year.

Serge Delmas was named coach of the year after leading Biarritz Olympique to the French title and to the final of the Heineken Cup.


Caucaunibuca is one of the fastest and most flamboyant players in France.

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