2017 has seen some fantastic sporting moments with several sportspeople receiving OBE’s and MBE’s. But there is one award that, given the calibre of past winners, is a highlight for any sporting icon – the BBC Sports Personality of the year.
Next month will see the 2017 shortlist candidates announced, with voting by the general public being opened shortly thereafter.
The award itself has seen some prestigious past winners from an array of sports, including Paula Radcliffe, Mark Cavendish, Freddie Flintoff, Johnny Wilkinson and David Beckham to name but a few.
Although the nominees for this year’s ceremony remain a secret, Sports Gazette decided to get the ball rolling by putting forward our pick of the favourites for the award:
Sir Andy Murray – Murray was knighted in the 2017 New Year’s honours list for services to tennis and charities. However, he has been plagued by injuries this season, forcing him to pull out of the US Open. Murray’s best feat this year happened at the French Open, where he managed to get to the semi-finals, eventually losing out to Stan Wawrinka. Murray has scooped the award in the last two years, and managed to pick up his first Sports Personality of the Year award back in 2013. Could a fourth win be on the cards for GB’s tennis superstar?
Anthony Joshua – April saw Anthony Joshua not only win the biggest fight of his life by defeating Vladimir Klitschko, but also racking up a new PPV box office record and selling out the 90,000 capacity Wembley stadium. The last boxer to win the Sports Personality of the year though was Joe Calzaghe back in 2007. Will we see the sport of boxing rise up once again, and claim the award in 2017?
Sir Mo Farah – The second ‘Sir’ on this shortlist, Mo Farah has become Britain’s most successful track athlete of all time. Surprisingly, Farah has only ever achieved third for the award, back in 2011. 2017 has seen him win the 10,000m at the Athletics World Championships in London, and come second in the 5,000m. Farah also managed to win the Great North Run with an impressive time of 1:00:06. After announcing his retirement from the track and competing only in road races, the BBC Sports Personality award would certainly be a tip of the hat in recognition of all his achievements.
Lewis Hamilton – Hamilton looks set to claim another world title this season as the Mercedes driver is in pole position to win the 2017 Formula 1 Drivers Championship. This year, Hamilton has also managed to break Michael Schumacher’s record with his 69th career pole position the Italian Grand Prix. In addition, Hamilton is no stranger to the award having won back in 2014. Will we see the award return to him in 2017?
Jodie Taylor – Taylor was selected as part of England’s squad for the 2017 Euros in the Netherlands and was given the number nine shirt for the tournament. Unsurprisingly, she managed to score a hat-trick against Scotland in a 6-0 win, becoming the first Englishwoman to do so in a major football tournament. Taylor then managed to score again against Spain and France before England were knocked out in the semi–finals. After racking up five goals in total, Taylor was awarded the Golden Boot for the tournament. Many might argue it’s time another woman won the Sport’s Personality of the year, with the last win back in 2004 for Kelly Holmes. Will a female finally win another SPOTY award in 2017?
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