2015 SPORTS AWARDS - SPORTS PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR: Wolfie and Louis aim for a treble but Slava could spring a surprise

Martin Adams was runner-up in the World Championships.
Martin Adams was runner-up in the World Championships.
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Here we go again! The Peterborough Telegraph Sports Awards are upon us once more.

Our sportsmen and sportswomen have already done their bit in 2015, and now it’s over to you, the readers, to decide which achievements you consider to have been the best.

Louis Smith was also a World Championship runner-up.

Louis Smith was also a World Championship runner-up.

Over the next few days we will be putting the spotlight on some of the many people who made an impression in 2015, but feel free to vote for anyone you feel deserves it.

Those included in our list of contenders in each of the 10 categories are merely suggestions and that’s all they are. The choice is entirely down to you.

The top three in each category when voting closes on January 15 2016 will be invited to the annual awards bash at the Cresset on January 29 when the winners will be announced and the sponsors will present the trophies.

SPORTS PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR

Peterborough Lions player/coach Darren Fox.

Peterborough Lions player/coach Darren Fox.

(sponsored by The Cresset)

Two previous winners of the Sport Personality of the Year prize could again be major contenders.

Deeping darts ace Martin ‘Wolfie’ Adams has in fact won the big prize twice before and he’s on course for the treble.

He picked up the accolade in 2007 and 2010 on the back of World Championship wins and although he just missed out on what would have been a fourth world title win in 2015, he’s still had a fantastic year.

The Cresset are sponsoring this award.

The Cresset are sponsoring this award.

He reached the world final again on the famous Lakeside stage in January but was pipped 7-6 by Scott Mitchell in a real thriller.

After that Wolfie went on to capture the prestigious Dutch Open for a third time and he won the Hal Open in Holland as well. And last month he acquitted himself brilliantly when mixing it for the first time with the PDC big boys in the Grand Slam of Darts.

Adams, now 59, topped his group with three wins of out of three before playing his part in a cracking quarter-final against the Belgian Kim Huybrechts. He narrowly lost 10-9 and in his post-match interview, Adams’ big personality shone through.

In typical Wolfie fashion, he hid his deep disappointment and smiled his way through the interview praising the crowd and all his opponents along the way.

Louis Smith is also on course for a third Sports Personality of the Year award.

His previous wins followed medal-winning performances at the Beijing and London Olympics.

This year there were no Olympic medals for the 26 year-old from Eye, but he did capture British and European Championship golds and a silver at the World Championships. Not a bad effort considering he took two years out after the London Olympics.

And, just like Wolfie, he was the first to congratulate his conqueror - GB team-mate Max Whitlock - at the World Championships.

Two members of the Phantoms ice hockey squad could push Adams and Smith in the voting. They are coach Slava Koulikov and netminder Janis Auzins.

Koulikov is the man responsible for bringing the good times back to Peterborough Phantoms.

He has overseen an incredible transformation of the city club since his appointment as player-coach in December, 2013. He guided Phantoms to English Premier League play-offs glory at the end of his first full season in charge and has turned them into league title contenders this season.

Latvian ace Auzins starred week in week out between the pipes and saved 91 per cent of the shots he faced. He’s a popular man off the ice as well.

From speedway Ged Rathbone and Ulrich Ostergaard could be contenders.

Rathbone is the man who ensured speedway survived in Peterborough and could attract bags of votes from Panthers fans .

The North-East businessman led a rousing fundraising effort in late 2014 which enabled Panthers to race on in the Premier League. And his tireless work was rewarded as his team surged to the semi-finals of the play-offs despite being plagued by injury problems.

Rathbone quickly built a fine relationship with supporters and brought fresh ideas to the table.

Fans’ favourite Ostergaard led Panthers from the front with battling displays throughout 2015 and enjoyed one of the biggest successes of his career when powering to glory in the Premier League Riders’ Championship.

Elsewhere Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony continues to back the club with great enthusiasm while Peterborough Lions head coach Darren Fox is a tower of strength down at Bretton Park. Both men have huge personalties.

And so does Nicky Brett, the local plumber who shot to the top of the world indoor bowls rankings in 2015, and Charlotte Edwards, the long-serving England ladies cricket captain from Ramsey.

CONTENDERS

Martin Adams

One of the most respected guys on the oche at top level. A great competitor who never knows when he’s beaten. And when he is, he always takes defeat gracefully. A great ambassador for his sport.

Louis Smith

Great Britain’s most well known gymnast had a great year that included British and European titles and a World Championship silver medal on his comeback to the sport.

Darren Fox

The Peterborough Lions Rugby Club player/coach who put the city side within a whisker of promotion in their first season in the National League. Feared by opposition players on the pitch and respected by opposition coaches off it.

Slava Koulikov

The Phantoms ice hockey coach who has turned the city side into one of the English Premier League big guns on a limited budget.

Janis Auzins

A great guy on and off the ice. The Phantoms’ Latvian netminder enjoyed an outstanding debut season in the UK. A huge entertainer week in week out.

Darragh MacAnthony

Peterborough United’s charismatic chairman who has a national profile thanks to a hard-hitting, controversial, but very open, Twitter account.

Nicky Brett

The area’s best indoor bowler for well over a decade. The local plumber topped the world indoor rankings in 2015.

Ged Rathbone

The man from Middlesbrough who saved the Peterborough Panthers speedway team from extinction. He regularly takes on a round-trip in excess of 300 miles to attend home meetings.

Charlotte Edwards

Captained England cricket team for the 200th time.

Ulrich Ostergaard

Popular Panthers skipper who won the Premier League Riders’ Championship in 2015.

VOTE BY TEXT

Once again we are allowing readers to vote in the Peterborough Telegraph Sports Awards by text. Text your votes before midnight on Friday January 15, 2016 to 65550 starting your message with the code PETAWARDS then a space, then the abbreviated category name (see below) followed by the name of the person or team you wish to vote for. Please include your own name and address. You can vote in as many categories as you wish in one text message, but each message should contain no more than 160 characters. And don’t forget it’s strictly a maximum of five votes per number per category.

Category abbreviations: Sports Personality - SP; Sportsman - SM; Sportswoman - SW; Team - TM; Junior Sportsman - JM; Junior Sportswoman - JSW; Footballer - F; Junior Footballer - JF; Unsung hero - UH; Coach - C.

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