The International Rugby Players’ Association has released its shortlist for the World Team and Player of the Year for 2013, created by a panel of professional players and former players.
Leicester Tigers prop Ayerza, who has 46 caps for Argentina and has shared in four Premiership title wins in the last seven seasons with his club, has been nominated at loosehead alongside England’s Alex Corbiseiro and Vincent Debaty of France.
The eventual winners of the Player and Team of the Year awards will be determined by a public vote and supporters are encouraged to make their choices.
Fans can start voting for their own International Player of the Year and World XV of the Year from today following the release of a 45-strong shortlist of contenders.
Part of the inaugural Ultimate Rugby IRPA Awards, the Fans' Player of the Year and World XV of the Year will be decided by votes cast on Ultimate Rugby's mobile app and announced in conjunction on November 26.
For their World XV of the Year award, fans are asked to pick one of the three nominated finalists in each of the 15 playing positions, while for the Player of the Year they are invited to choose just one name from the shortlist.
Anyone can vote as a fan: rugby supporters, players, officials – even referees.
All they need to do is go to www.ultimaterugby.com, download the mobile app and follow the voting instructions.
The 45-man shortlist features players from 11 nations.
Shortlist for Fans' Player and World XV of the Year awards (in order of playing position) is:
Loosehead: Vincent Debaty (Fr), Alex Corbiseiro (Eng), Marcos Ayerza (Arg)
Hooker: Bismarck Du Plessis (SA), Benjamin Kayser (Fr) Richard Hibbard (Wales)
Tighthead: Juan Figallo (Arg), Adam Jones (Wales), Census Johnston (Samoa)
Lock: Sam Whitelock (NZ), Eben Eztebeth (South Africa), Joe Tekori (Samoa)
Lock: James Horwill (Aus), Brodie Retallick (NZ), Alun Wyn Jones (Wales)
Blindside: Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe (Arg), Louis Picomoles (Fr), Liam Messam(NZ).
Openside: Sean O'Brien (Ire), Richie McCaw (NZ), Francois Louw (SA)
No8: Kieran Read (NZ), Sergio Parisse (Italy), Toby Faletau (Wales)
Scrum-half: Kahn Fotuali'l (Samoa), Aaron Smith (NZ), Will Genia (Aus)
Fly-half: Dan Carter (NZ), Johnny Sexton (Ire), Aaron Cruden (NZ)
Wing: George North (Wales), Julian Savea (NZ), Sitiveni Sivivatu (NZ)
Centre: Jamie Roberts (Wales), Ma'a Nonu (NZ), Jean DeVilliers (SA)
Centre: Wesley Fofana (Fr), Jonathan Davies (Wales), Conrad Smith (NZ)
Wing: Israel Folau (Aus), Ben Smith (NZ), Napolioni Nalaga (Fiji)
Full-back: Willie Le Roux (SA), Leigh Halfpenny (Wales), Israel Dagg (NZ)