He's achieved more in one season than many of the game’s legends have achieved in a lifetime!

Earlier this week, inspirational Giants captain Danny Brough was officially crowned the world’s best stand-off at the Rugby League International Federation’s annual awards ceremony in Manchester.

It was just the latest in a long list of individual accolades picked up by the 30-year-old to crown an amazing 2013.

Having led Huddersfield to their first top-of-the-table finish in 81 years, Brough was named Super League Man of Steel, won the prestigious League Express Albert Goldthorpe Medal in recognition of being the competition’s most consistent performer and was also named the Rugby League Writers’ Association Player of the Year.

 

On top of that, he picked up all the Giants’ major club awards and supporters’ awards, having broken a couple of long-standing Huddersfield club records along the way.

He was also named in the Super League Dream Team – along with fellow Giants Eorl Crabtree, Leroy Cudjoe, Brett Ferres and Shaun Lunt – and then captained Scotland to the quarter-finals of the Rugby League World Cup against all the odds.

Danny Brough, Shaun Lunt, Eorl Crabtree, Brett Ferres and Leroy Cudjoe in the Super League Dream Team
Danny Brough, Shaun Lunt, Eorl Crabtree, Brett Ferres and Leroy Cudjoe in the Super League Dream Team
 

It was that achievement on the global stage that gave him the nod as the world’s best stand-off ahead of Australia’s Jonathan Thurston and New Zealand’s Kieran Foran.

Brough was also shortlisted alongside New Zealand’s Sonny Bill Williams and Australia’s Greg Inglis for the International Player of the Year, although he ultimately missed out to Williams.

But these honours clearly prove Brough is one of the world’s best players right now.

So does that mean he deserves the title of Huddersfield Rugby League Club’s greatest ever player?

Over the years, Huddersfield has produced some true legends of the game, starting with the ‘Team of All Talents’ squad that swept all before them just before and after the First World War, through to the Fartown side of the early 1950s who were also packed with world-class stars and were the dominant power of their particular era, and now Brough’s Giants of 2013.

It’s a discussion which is expected to result in as lively debate.

And who better to get the ball rolling than Huddersfield RLFC historian David Gronow, who acknowledges Brough has to be right up there.

“No-one can deny what Danny has achieved with the Giants during the 2013 season,” he said.

“He’s just become the club record-breaker for ‘Goals in a Season’ (156) – beating Ben Gronow’s record of 147 held for 93 years – and also claiming his 348 ‘Points in a Season’ to eclipse Pat Devery’s record of 332 achieved in 1952-53.

“Add to that The Albert Goldthorpe Medal in honour of being the leading player in Super League 2013, plus the prestigious accolade of being named ‘Super League Man of Steel’, and it’s obvious we’re talking about a very special player.

“He was also selected for Super League XVIII Dream Team and just been voted the world’s best stand-off.

“So, if you are a current-generation supporter of Huddersfield, you would probably say ‘Yes’.

“Is he the best stand-off we’ve had? He’s definitely one of them, but consider a few that have gone before, such as Jim Davies, Gwyn Richards, Russ Pepperell and Pat Devery.

Pat Devery leads out the Huddersfield team in a play-off game at Maine Road, Manchester
Pat Devery leads out the Huddersfield team in a play-off game at Maine Road, Manchester
 

“Is he Fartown’s greatest? Well, if he is, where do you place Harold Wagstaff, Douglas Clark, Albert Rosenfeld, Pat Devery, Lionel Cooper, Dave Valentine, Frank Dyson, et al?

“My personal favourite was Tommy Smales, but there again, it just depends on which era the individual was brought up in!

“We have to move with the times – it’s a completely different game now.

“However, Broughy is certainly right up there with them as a brilliant playmaker, goalkicker and footballer.

“No doubt everyone has a different opinion, and rightly so. ‘Greatest-Ever’ is a debatable argument every time!”

Examiner RL writer Chris Roberts will next week focus on his top 10 players in the Giants era – will you agree?