The finalists have been revealed in six hotly contested award categories, as anticipation continues to mount ahead of the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre on Wednesday (28 September). From dozens of nominations in each category, the top three vying for the titles of Male Athlete, Female Athlete, Para-Sport Athlete, Coach and Team of the Year have been named, along with an impressive shortlist for Sporting Moment of the Year, as voted for by the Scottish public
More than 50 Scottish Olympians and Paralympians from the recent Games in Rio will be in attendance on the evening, the culmination of the official celebrations of the Scots on Team GB and Paralympics GB. They will join leaders from the worlds of sport and business, as the stunning achievements of individuals, schools, clubs and teams across the whole of Scottish sport receive the recognition they deserve. This special night of inspiration and entertainment will be hosted by double Olympic Gold medallist Shirley Robertson, OBE and comedian Fred MacAulay.
Awarded to the individual athlete or team, whose achievement represents excellence in sport at the highest level, winners of Male Athlete, Female Athlete, Para-Sport Athlete and Team of the Year will go forward with a chance to add their name to the historic Emirates Lonsdale Trophy as the 2016 Scottish Sportsperson/Team of the Year, following in the footsteps of past recipients including six time winner Sir Chris Hoy.
Many of the Olympic and Paralympic medallists will be in contention for a range of the awards including tennis player Andy Murray, rowers Heather Stanning and Katherine Grainger, cyclists Callum Skinner and Katie Archibald, Stirling University’s swimming quartet, not to mention Paralympians, Libby Clegg, Gordon Reid, Maria Lyle and Jo Butterfield.
As we honour Scotland’s sporting heroes, the coaches who have worked behind the scenes to guide them to unprecedented success over the past 12 months will also step into the limelight with three outstanding candidates named as finalists for Coach of the Year.
The Scottish public have come out in force to vote for Scotland’s Sporting Moment of the Year. Thousands have cast their vote in an online poll, run by Team Scotland in partnership with the Scottish Sun, to decide which of eleven Scottish sporting performances over the last 12 months deserves to take the title. From an initial list of eleven, the public’s top five have been revealed, with the winner to be announced on Awards night.
Paul Bush OBE, Chair, Commonwealth Games Scotland, said: “2016 has proved beyond doubt that Scottish sport is truly in a golden age. The individuals and teams shortlisted represent the absolute pinnacle of achievement in sport and I look forward to celebrating with them on what will be a memorable and inspirational night.”
Male Athlete of the Year – sponsored by Commonwealth Games Scotland
Andy Murray – A historic year including becoming the first British man to reach the French Openfinal since 1937, the first player to win the Queen’s Club title five times, the first player to win a second Olympic singles title and the first British man since Fred Perry in 1936 to win a second Wimbledon title.
Duncan Scott – Age 19, and last year’s winner of the Sir Peter Heatly Trophy for the Young Athlete of the Year, swimmer Duncan Scott continued his rise in the sport in 2016, claiming two Olympic silver relay medals in the 4x200m Freestyle and 4x100m Medley events.
Callum Skinner – Stepped into the large shoes of Sir Chris Hoy to anchor home Team GB’s Team Sprint squad to Olympic gold. He went on to deliver personal bests on route to silver in the Individual Sprint – a first major championship medal in the event.
Female Athlete of the Year – sponsored by EDF Energy
Heather Stanning – Won Olympic gold in the coxless pair with Helen Glover, their 39th consecutive win in a five year streak in which they have become the current World, Olympic and European Record Holders and reigning Olympic, World, and European Champions.
Katie Archibald – Took Olympic gold in the Team Pursuit after having ruptured her posterior cruciate knee ligament and fractured her elbow in a motorbike crash in December. The team set world records in each round on route to victory.
Katherine Grainger – Became Great Britain’s most decorated female Olympian following a gutsy silver in the women’s double sculls in Rio. The first British woman to win five medals in separate Olympic Games.
Para-Sport Athlete of the Year – sponsored by CGI
Jo Butterfield – Set a new world record in the F51 Club Throw as she added the Paralympic title to her 2016 European gold, and gold and bronze from the IPC World Championships in October.
Gordon Reid – Claimed his first Grand Slam singles title at the Australian Open before winning both singles and doubles titles at Wimbledon and capping his season with Paralympic singles gold and doubles silver.
Libby Clegg – Took double gold in Rio in the T11 100m and 200m after a roller-coaster experience which saw her break the world record in the 100m semi-final, be disqualified, reinstated and win gold.
Team of the Year – sponsored by PSL Team Sports / Canterbury
GB Davis Cup Team – Andy Murray clinched the decisive point at the World Group final in Ghent, Belgium as Great Britain won the Davis Cup for the first time since 1936. The team effort was expertly co-ordinated by Scottish captain Leon Smith.
Team GB 4x200m Men’s Freestyle Relay – Of the five Team GB swimmers involved in heat and final, four were Scottish, as Team GB stormed to silver behind the USA, and broke the British record in Rio.
Scotland Women’s Football – The first senior Scottish football team to qualify for a World Cup or European Championships since 1998 as a 2-1 win over Iceland secured their place at Euro 2017.
Coach of the Year – sponsored by University of Stirling
Karen Ross – Coached wheelchair tennis player Gordon Reid to a first Grand Slam singles title at the Australian Open, both Wimbledon singles and doubles titles and singles gold and doubles silver at the Rio 2016 Paralympics.
Ben Higson and Steven Tigg – Coached their group of University of Stirling swimmers to success including 11 medals at the 2016 European Championships and three Olympic silver medals from the four squad members selected for Rio.
Leon Smith – As team captain, led the first GB Davis Cup team to lift the trophy since 1936. Leon has been at the helm throughout the five year journey from the third tier to glory.
Sporting Moment of the Year – sponsored by The Scottish Sun
Rugby 7s: Scotland’s last second victory at London 7s as Dougie Fife scores after the hooter
Athletics: Laura Muir runs world leading time to win Paris Diamond League, breaking British & Commonwealth records
Tennis: Scots Andy Murray and Gordon Reid win Wimbledon titles on the same day
Football: Hibs score a last minute goal to end 114 year wait for a Scottish Cup title
Swimming: Olympic silver in British record time for the Men’s 4x200m Freestyle relay team
For more information on the 2016 Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards visit http://www.scottishsportsawards.scot