2013 has had a lot to live up to given it followed 2012 and all the sporting success that came in Olympic year - but live up to expectations it certainly has with continued success for a whole host of British stars.
This is reflected in the list for the 2013 Sports Personality of the Year. Andy Murray is strong favourite after bringing an end to that 77-year wait for a Wimbledon Champion. He is named among an elite list of 10 who will compete for the public vote on 15 December.
The 10 contenders include Murray, Tour de France winner Chris Froome, US Open golf champion Justin Rose, record-breaking jockey Tony McCoy, Sailor Ben Ainslie, England cricketer Ian Bell, athletes Mo Farah and Christine Ohuruogu, wheelchair athlete Hannah Cockcroft and rugby union's Leigh Halfpenny.
Choosing between them is not easy. For every advocate of Andy Murray, there will be an equal number arguing that Mo Farah’s world double over 5,000m and 10,000m put him above Murray in terms of achievement. John McCririck would possibly fight the corner for AP McCoy who reached an amazing 4,000 winners this year. The same could be said for all the other candidates - all great sporting performers in their own right.
Although the SPOTY often comes down to a contest of popularity rather than a true measure of sporting brilliance, for me the one thing that tips the balance to earn my vote is the sporting moment that you will always remember where you were when it happened. In 2013 that undoubtedly was Murray’s triumph at Wimbledon.
There can’t be many sporting moments that captivate almost an entire nation, well several in fact, after all let’s not forget Murray is a Scot first and foremost even if all Brits claimed him for themselves. That Murray won the title at Wimbledon by beating Novak Djokovic in straight sets, when the weight of expectation must have been huge, was highly impressive.
I’ll remember that moment as much as I will the ‘Golden Hour’ in London 2012 when Mo, Jess, and Greg all took gold in quick succession. I’ll remember it as much as 2005 and Istanbul and that miracle comeback for Liverpool. I’ll remember it as much as Gazza’s tears in 1990. I’ll remember it as much as Steve Redgrave’s final gold in 2000 or even England clinching the Ashes in 2005.
Murray’s Wimbledon triumph was to all Brits what 1966 was to all Englishmen. It was the moment for our generation and much as ‘66 was for the previous generation. And if the SPOTY truly is about personality then Murray finally showed that he had some, first with the tears the previous year and then this triumph this year.
So who’s is you pick for SPOTY? And what of those sporting moments that you’ll never forget where you were when they happened. If you were forced to watch one sporting magic moment on endless repeat what would yours be?
Oct3120132:09 p.m.Retelling the story of a sporting legend or rivalry on the big screen isn’t always a winner. Not every movie is guaranteed success and the choice of...
Oct1120132:45 p.m.Eligibility to compete in sport for a nation is no longer dictated by national boundaries based on where a person was born. For a while now sports men and...
Oct0420133:01 p.m.Ah well. I’m not in the the London Marathon for 2014 and that news comes as both a disappointment as well as a relief. Don’t get me wrong, I know...
Sep1920133:55 p.m.“Now is the winter of our discontent, made glorious summer by this sun of Qatar” could be a Shakepearian line uttered by the mouth of FIFA...
Aug27201311:23 a.m.They say that life begins at 40 so by that reckoning my life begins this Sunday when I reach the four decade milestone. So is reaching this milestone a period...