Sam Warburton was honoured at Cardiff Blues End of Season Awards for his special contribution to rugby and ambassadorial role to the region.
The formidable flanker, who is just the second player in history to captain the British & Irish Lions on two separate tours, scooped the Cardiff Blues Special Recognition Award at the ceremony at the Reardon Smith Theatre at the National Museum of Wales, Cardiff.
Warburton of course, was unable to attend the evening as he leads the Lions in New Zealand but he sent a video message from Auckland and was overwhelmed by the honour.
He said: “I just wanted to say a massive thank you for the award. It’s genuinely an unbelievable honour for me and I’m flattered by the thought of it.
“It’s a pretty surreal feeling to win an award like this and I also wish I could have been there to win my 100th cap, which has taken me long enough!
“But considering I was a 12, 13, 14-year-old season ticket holder and now I’m in the situation I am at the club I have always played at and always will play at, an award like this is very special and will definitely have pride of place in the house.
“Thank you once again, I hope everyone has a fantastic evening - congratulations to all the other lads who have won all the other awards, a massive thankyou to all the boys who are leaving us for their efforts.
“I look forward to catching up with you all soon and kicking on next season and having a successful year.”
During an illustrious career to date, the 28-year-old has already packed plenty in. He has made 105 appearances for Cardiff Blues, 74 for Wales and skippered two consecutive Lions tours.
He became Wales captain in 2011, following injury to Matthew Rees, becoming the youngest skipper ever at a World Cup. He is now Wales’ most-capped captain.
Warburton has won the Amlin Challenge Cup with Cardiff Blues and a Grand Slam and two Six Nations titles with Wales. At the beginning of the 2016=17 season he signed a new National Dual Contract.