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Sarah Hirini reflects on historic Māori player of the year award - 'A huge honour for me and my whānau'

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Hirini became the first female player in the award's 70 year history to win it at last night's NZ Rugby Awards. Source: Breakfast

Black Ferns Sevens captain Sarah Hirini made history with her win at last night's New Zealand Rugby Awards after becoming the first female to take home the Tom French Memorial Māori player of the year award.

Hirini pipped Highlanders hooker Ash Dixon and All Blacks halfback TJ Perenara to win the prize which has previously been won by the likes of Waka Nathan, Buck Shelford, Piri Weepu and more.

Hirini told TVNZ 1's Breakfast this morning she was humbled to be the first female recipient in the award's 70-year history.

"It's a huge honour for me and my family," Hirini said.

"It was amazing - once I won and sat back down in my chair, all my family had messaged me about just how proud they are of me and that for me is really special.

"I was extremely honoured and it was really special to be the first female to win the award."

Hirini also spent time talking to Breakfast presenter John Campbell about her injury, next year's Olympics and her relatively-unknown hobby of flying.

Watch the full interview in the video above.