Nehe Rihara Milner-Skudder of Ngāti Porou, Tapuika and his rise to All Blacks fame has been recognised at the 2016 Matariki Awards.
The talented athlete is the recipient of Te Waitā Award for Sport.
Milner-Skudder is a formidable New Zealand rugby union player who has played for the Hurricanes in Super Rugby and Manawatu in the ITM Cup.
Nehe began his professional career by switching to rugby league and was a member of the Sydney-based, Canterbury Bulldogs under-20 Holden Cup side in 2009 and 2010.
He moved back to New Zealand for 2011 and linked up with the Massey University rugby union team, before being selected by his local ITM Cup side Manawatu, debuting during the 2011 season. He quickly established himself as a regular in the Manawatu starting line-ups and although injury limited him to just five appearances in 2013 he was named as a member of the Hurricanes wider training group for the 2014 Super Rugby season.
An impressive ITM Cup campaign in 2014 in which Manawatu topped the Championship division, saw him upgraded to the Hurricanes official squad for 2015.
Nehe was also selected for the All Blacks in 2015, and was a key member of the 2015 Rugby World Cup winning team, scoring New Zealand's first try in the RWC final.
He was awarded the World Rugby Breakthrough Player of the Year in 2015.
Last year he also received the award for Best Sportsman at the Māori Sports Awards.