Dan Carter, 33, has been crowned World Rugby Player of the Year for the third time in his career. Carter received the accolade on 1 November, a day after his man of the match performance helped New Zealand defend their Rugby World Cup crown in the 34-17 win over Australia, his last game for the All Blacks.
Following his 2005 and 2012 successes, he becomes only the third man to win the award three times alongside countryman and New Zealand captain Richie McCaw. Carter, who fended off the challenges of Australia flanker Michael Hooper, Wales lock Alyn Wyn Jones, Scotland scrum half Greig Laidlaw and All Blacks teammate Julian Savea, retires as New Zealand 's leading points scorer, having amassed 1598 points in 112 appearances.
Carter said: "It's a dream come true. It's not why you play the game, for personal accolades, but at the same time it's very pleasing and a very proud moment because I've had to work extremely hard, especially these last two to three years with the injuries that I've had. To come out fighting on the other side and achieve what I've achieved personally, but also what the team has achieved, it has been a very special moment of my career."
New Zealand were named the World Rugby Team of the Year after defending the Webb Ellis trophy while Australia coach Michael Cheika was named coach of the year after guiding the Wallabies to Saturday's final and to the Rugby Championship.
New Zealand's Nehe Milner-Skudder received the award for Breakthrough Player of the Year while his teammate Julian Savea scooped Try of the Year for his effort against France in the quarter-finals.