By STEVE SPINKS and AAP
WELL known Far North Coast barrister and former Wallaby, Peter Crittle, has been awarded the Vernon Pugh Award for distinguished service at the annual International Rugby Board Awards ceremony in Paris.
Crittle, who is also a former Australian Rugby Union president, received the award for his outstanding contribution to Australian Rugby and in particular his part in the hosting of the 2003 World Cup.
The former Wallaby forward has chambers in Lismore and has divided his time between Byron Bay and Sydney for 24 years.
Crittle has been a huge supporter of the North Coast Bar as well as local rugby union and only last year was honoured as an officer of the Order of Australia in the Queen's Birthday Honours List for his rugby achievements.
Crittle played 15 Tests for Australia between 1962 and 1967 and from 1993-99 was president of the New South Wales Rugby Union.
He had been vice-president of the Australian Rugby Union since 1994.
He was elected president of the Australian Rugby Union in 2001 and served in that role until this year when he stood down at the end of his term.
All Black five-eighth Daniel Carter was named the player of the year at the same ceremony, while New Zealand was team of the year and coach Graham Henry coach of the year.
Besides his time as a player and administrator, Crittle is also well known as an avid Rugby historian and also provided support to members of the Forbes Rugby Club following the Bali bombings in 2002.