Welsh-based Ben Morgan and Gethin Jenkins have made the shortlist for the ERC European Player of the Year 2012 award.
Blues prop Jenkins and Scarlets No 8 Morgan have an opportunity to further enhance their chances of taking the crown from last year's winner Sean O'Brien when playing in their respective Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup games this weekend.
While the initial longlist recognises the performances from the Pool stages only, the Judging Panel will have the option to consider players who make outstanding contributions in the quarter-final and semi-final matches for their shortlist and final selection.
A shortlist of five players will be announced following the Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup semi-finals (27/28/29 April) and the ERC European Player of the Year winner for 2012 will be selected after the London Finals Weekend of 18/19 May.
Longlist of contenders for the ERC European Player of Year 2012 based on Pool stage performances:
Mouritz Botha Lock Saracens
Mike Brown Full Back Harlequins
Antoine Claassen Back Row Brive
Thierry Dusautoir Back Row Toulouse
Owen Farrell Centre Saracens
Stephen Ferris Back Row Ulster Rugby
Wesley Fofana Centre ASM Clermont Auvergne Gethin Jenkins Prop Cardiff Blues
Johnny Sexton Out half Leinster Rugby
Greig Laidlaw Scrum half/Out half Edinburgh Rugby
Timoci Matanavou Wing Toulouse
Ignacio Mieres Out half Exeter Chiefs Ben Morgan No 8 Scarlets
Ronan O'Gara Out half Munster Rugby
Netani Talei No 8 Edinburgh Rugby
Members of the WRU Board were invited to attend a training session where sumo wrestlers were being put through their paces and as WRU President Dennis Gethin reveals, the Tokyo visit will live long in the memory.
Representatives from the WRU and the Welsh Assembly government were invited to meet some of Japan's leading businesses. WRU chief executive Roger Lewis and Wales head coach Robin McBryde were among the guests.
Following Wales Under 20's second win of the Junior World Championship over Scotland, a lot of hard work is still required ahead of the Pool decider against Argentina on Thursday. WRU TV took a look behind the scenes.
Wales Under 20 coach Danny Wilson, captain Ellis Jenkins and winger Owen Jenkins give their post match reaction after recording a comfortable win over Samoa in the opening game of the Junior World Championship in France.