If I had said to you on January 1st 2012, that a certain sportsman was to win Olympic Gold in his event as well as one of his sports majors, becoming the first Brit to do so for 76 years, and still not win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year come December you would have had trouble believing me. However, this is a situation that may arise in a few months time. Andy Murray's victory at Flushing Meadows last night was an iconic moment in the chequered history of British Tennis. Not since Fred Perry in 1936 had Britain had a major winner, but a pulsating five setter against Novak Djokovic saw Andy Murray finally grab the elusive major that had evaded him for so long. A triumph that should be lauded, especially when you consider the underachievement of British Tennis throughout the years. One could therefore conclude that all Andy Murray has to do come December is turn up to the SPOTY ceremony to find his name already engraved into the trophy. Hell, he should even start writing his acceptance speech now. But this year was no ordinary year for British sport. The London 2012 Olympics saw to that and so we, as the British public, are left to ponder this question, who should win the BBC SPOTY? And also, albeit rather less importantly, what was going on with Andy Murray's hair last night? If tennis were predominantly a game of style and grace then surely he would be so far down the world rankings that his only hope of winning a US Open would be on a PS3. Not only does he play in the golden era of tennis, his seemingly best chance of winning the SPOTY comes in a golden year for British sport. You have to feel sorry for the guy surely?
In all seriousness, the list of potential winners for this year's SPOTY runs as long as an election campaign. You have Sir Chris Hoy, Mo Farah, David Weir and Rory McIlroy on the men's side and Jessica Ennis, Victoria Pendleton, Laura Trott, Ellie Simmonds and Sarah Storey on the female side. And that's without mentioning people like Johnnie Peacock and Ben Ainslie. The list just goes on and on and for every athlete, there is as strong an argument as the next as why they should win it. Are you a fan of a man dedicating his life's work to the blood, sweat and tears of gruelling hours on a bike for six Olympic gold medals? Then your choice is Sir Chris Hoy. Are you someone who appreciates simple outlandish achievements from someone who has overcome prejudice to secure four gold medals in one Paralympics? Then go for David Weir. However, you may also be someone who appreciates utter dominance in their craft, dealing with the pressure of being a Games 'poster girl' to deliver performance after performance of complete brilliance, that's Jessica Ennis. I could go on but you get my point. Everyone will have his or her own views but for this author their can only ever be one winner of this year's award.
The Tour de France has often been seen as the 'holy grail' around British Cycling headquarters, the 'elephant in the room' almost. Everyone knew that it was possible to launch a British rider to the top of the podium but it was something that wasn't talked about, instead the concept of 'marginal gains' was the process by which they worked, with the hope that one day that would be enough to lift a British rider to achieve the 'holy grail'. Bradley Wiggins was the rider who achieved this improbable feat this year and for me personally, I feel his performance in the French mountains and countryside was the best achievement by any British sportsman ever. Therefore because of this sheer fact, he has to win this year's SPOTY. Throw in the fact that he has one three of the other Cycling 'Grand Tour' events this year as well as an Olympic Time Trial gold and you have to consider, is anyone else more deserving than this self-proclaimed maverick?
About Author / Additional Info:
I am an enthusiastic writer from London currently studying at Sheffield University.