SWANNY’S WORLD OF SPORT: How to make SPOTY even more boring

GB ladies hockey goalkeeper Maddie Hinch (right) with captain Kate Richardson-Walsh.
GB ladies hockey goalkeeper Maddie Hinch (right) with captain Kate Richardson-Walsh.
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Well done the BBC for making their Sports Personality of the Year (SPOTY) competition even more boring than normal.

Of course it’s not their fault it’s a one-horse race as tennis star Andy Murray is the hottest of favourites to win the main prize for a third time.

Bubbly personality Nicola Adams.

Bubbly personality Nicola Adams.

But it is their fault for producing a huge list of 16 finalists, a measure the beeb presumably felt was necessary to fulfil their desire for political correctness.

So we the voters are left with a whole bunch of worthy Olympians who will just take votes off each other enabling Murray to win by the sort of landslide the Tories are looking forward to when they get round to humiliating Jeremy Corbyn at a General Election.

But even when throwing 16 names into the hat the beeb manage to make glaring omissions and dodgy decisions. Some are so stupid I can only assume Gary Lineker had a hand in compiling the list.

Boxer Nicola Adams retained her Olympic title in 2016 by winning three, short bouts. She’s a bubbly character, but the standard was appalling. Not her fault of course, but there are surely more deserving nominees?

The winner of SPOTY 2016 Andy Murray.

The winner of SPOTY 2016 Andy Murray.

I feel sympathy for Carl Frampton, a boxer who really is the best in the world. A hard-nosed professional who gets in the ring with the hardest, toughest, most-skilled opponents and beats them. Even when he had to fight in a champion’s backyard. He’s not on the short list.

And why is captain Kate Richardson-Walsh the representative of the gold-medal winning GB hockey team? Goalkeeper Maddie Hinch was their star player by some distance.

Why pick individuals out of successful teams anyway? There is a team award after all.

Leicester City striker’s Jamie Vardy has been hopeless since August and yet he’s been nominated for the top prize. Why him? Why not Foxes goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel who’s been far more consistent over the last 12 months.

England’s rugby union team have won every single international this year, a remarkable achievement coming as it did straight off the back of a dreadful World Cup.

But not a single player has been nominated for SPOTY. That makes no sense to me, and probably not to Owen Farrell or Maro Itoje.

At least Eddie Jones should be a shoo-in for the coach of the year prize, although Leicester City’s Claudio Ranieri is also a worthy candidate. Both have big personalities which is a bonus in the age of the coached soundbite.

And I’m no fan of cycling, but if four cyclists from Great Britain’s Olympic team are on the shortlist why isn’t Chris Froome who won the Tour de France for a third time?

Golfer Danny Willett’s inclusion is down to winning the Masters in April. It’s been downhill ever since for him, culminating in a dreadful Ryder Cup peformance. Another waste of a nomination.

It’s Murray first, triathlete Alistair Brownlee second and gymnast Max Whitlock third for me.

The rest can stay at home and shorten the night.