It is coming to the point in the year, when the nation starts to think about who deserves to be crowned sports personality of the year. With the exception of the Ashes, the major events of the year are now under our belt. The year started with so much hype with events such as the FIFA World Cup to look forward to. The performance of the England team was not exactly the best and it is unlikely that a footballer will win the award. I’m going to lay the gauntlet down and place my money on Andy Murray. Despite not winning a major tournament, his rise up the world rankings has been phenomenal. He is now up into the top 20 in the ATP rankings when he was not even in the top 100 a year ago, and this makes him a strong contender. Along with Rafael Nadal, he is one of only two players to beat the mighty Roger Federer this year. With Federer now being regarded as the sport’s greatest ever player, Murray’s accomplishment surely deserves some recognition. Could the Flying Scotsman finally give us a British success at Wimbledon in 2007?
As for this year’s awards, an outsider may like to put some money on Shaun Murphy. Murphy is a snooker sensation. Yes, we know that being even remotely sensational at something as brain-smashingly dull as snooker is easily forgotten, but that’s what Shaun Murphy is. Now the World Champion, Murphy at the start of the championship was only ranked in 48th position. However, snooker hardly constitutes an award winning “sport”, and so it is unlikely to go to the Irishman. Others have been favouring Beth Tweedle- a young athlete who got Britain its first ever Gold medal at world competition standard in gymnastics. There is also Lewis Hamilton, champion of the GP2 series (international championship featuring the best young drivers from all over the world). Let’s not discount Nicole Cooke, winner of the Tour De France, an amazing individual achievement. It seems that we will all have trouble predicting this year’s winner! Go on…place your money on Murray!