2015 SPORTS AWARDS - SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR: A Latvian and a Lithuanian challenging the best of British

Janis Auzins has been outstanding for Peterborough Phantoms.

Janis Auzins has been outstanding for Peterborough Phantoms.

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Here’s the next category in the 2015 Peterborough Telegraph Sports Awards - the Sportsman of the Year.

Don’t forget those in the list of contenders are merely suggestions and that’s all they are. The choice is entirely down to you.

Joe Dawborn took 10 wickets in an innings.

Joe Dawborn took 10 wickets in an innings.

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.

SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR

(Sponsored by Motorpoint)

A Canadian (Doug McEwen), a Dane (Hans Andersen) and an Australian (Jason Crump)have all won the Sportsman of the Year prize in the past.

Ulrich Ostergaard won the Premier League Riders Championship.

Ulrich Ostergaard won the Premier League Riders Championship.

And there could be an overseas winner again from the play-0ff winning Peterborough Phantoms ice hockey team.

Latvian netminder Janis Auzins is widely regarded as the best in his position in the English Premier League, while Lithuanian forward Darius Pliskauskas was the main man at the other end of the ice.

Both have produced brilliant performances throughout 2015. Like all star performers they are at their best in the biggest games.

But Phantoms are far from a team of quality imports. Homegrown captain James Ferrara also enjoyed an exceptional 12 months with the city club.

Motorpoint are sponsoring this award.

Motorpoint are sponsoring this award.

Peterborough hasn’t boasted many world number ones over the years, but bowler Nicky Brett - ‘the Yaxley Plumber’ - achieved that ranking in March when winning the International Open in Blackpool.

He remains a regular winner on the very competitive bowls circuit.

Gymnast Louis Smith enjoys the highest profile of any city sportsman thanks to a career which has delivered Olympic medals as well as success in Strictly Come Dancing.

And Smith is still collecting medals from the toughest events. He was part of the GB team that won a world team gold this year for the first time in history.

Peterborough Town Cricket Club endured a lean year by their recent standards, but they still possess some fantastic talent.

The stand-out performer last season was fast bowler Joe Dawborn who took all 10 wickets in a Northants Premier Division match (the first Town player to do so at that level since 1978) at Brixworth and also took a hat-trick in a game against the high-class Finedon side.

Dawborn claimed 67 Premier Division wickets, five more than his nearest challenger, team-mate Paul McMahon, and played with success for Northants and Leicestershire seconds as well as the Cambridgeshire Minor Counties team.

Peterborough Panthers emerged from a spell in the doldrums to reach the British Premier League play-off semi-finals under captain Ulrich Ostergard, and he was also a terrific winner of the Premier League Individual Riders Final.

Pool ace Mark Gray deserves a mention for his superbly consistent season in the nine-ball version of his sport.

Success in Venice last month means he has now won more Europeam Tour titles in American nine-ball pool than any other Englishman.

The PT circulation area is fortunate to have two top darts stars in Martin Adams and Dennis Harbour and the latter’s form in 2015 has earned him a place in the next BDO World Championships when Adams will start as one of the favourites to win.

The Fenland town of Chatteris has delivered two outstanding sportsmen in 2014.

Boxer Jordan Gill has compiled a classy unbeaten run as a professional, while snooker star Joe Perry won his first world ranking tournament when beating former world champion Mark Williams in the final of the Players’ Championship in Bangkok.

Perry came from 3-0 down to win 4-3 and bank a cheque for £100k.

The lengthy list of local sporstmen to capture national and international titles in 2015 includes world champions James Fox (para-rowing), Josh Hood (kick-boxing), Matt Skelhon (para-shooting) and David Brown (athletics); European champions Leon Gold (kick-boxing) and Dmitrij Sribnyj (grid-racing); and British champions Antony Brown (triathlon), Grant Brown (kick-boxing), Courtney Brown (kick-boxing), Ricky Huskisson (athletics), John Blackwell (athletics), Phil Martin (athletics) and Simon Fell (athletics).

CONTENDERS

Martin Adams

World Darts Championship runner-up. Won the Dutch Open and Hal Open.

Dennis Harbour

Another darts star who won the Scottish Open, Isle of Man Open, England National Championship and the BDO Gold Cup pairs.

Darren Fox

Lions player/coach who played for England Counties XV against the France Federale XV.

Stuart Brown

Top golfer who won six East PGA events including the East Region Championship, and was runner-up in six more.

Ulrich Ostergaard

Panthers speedway rider who won the Premier League Riders Championship.

Janis Auzins

Phantoms star netminder.

Darius Pliskauskas

Phantoms goal-getter .

James Ferrara

Phantoms play-off winning captain.

Louis Smith

British and European champion gymnast.

Nicky Brett

Top indoor bowler in the world in 2015.

James Fox

Para-rowing World Cup winner.

Joe Dawborn

Peterborough Town Cricket Club paceman who took all 10 wickets in an innings.

Matt Skelhon

Won a Para-shooting World Cup gold medal.

Jordan Gill

Boxer from Chatteris unbeaten in 16 professional fights.

Dmitrij Sribnyj

Euorpean Gymkhana Grid Racing champion.

Antony Brown

British triathlon age group champion.

Leon Gold

A double world and European kick-boxing champ from BCKA.

Joe Perry

Chatteris snooker pro who finished 2015 with a best ever world ranking of ninth. Won the Players Championship in Bangkok.

Mark Gray

Pool player ranked number two in Europe.

Josh Hood

World kick-boxing champion.

Grant Brown

British kick-boxing champion.

Courtney Brown

British kick-boxing champion.

Simon Fell

Briths Masters Over 35 1500m champion.

Ricky Huskisson

British Masters Over 55 60m champion.

John Blackwell

British Masters Over 60 javelin champion.

Phil Martin

British Masters Over 35 Half-Marathon and Marathon champion.

David Brown

Won a gold medal and set a new world record in the 4x400m relay at the World Masters Track and Field Championships in Lyon. Won an individual bronze in the 400m.

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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