#SJA2014: Voting opens for British Sports Awards

Sports Awards banner 1

Voting is now open for Sports Journalists’ Association members to select the Sportsman, Sportswoman and Team of the Year.

The SJA is staging the annual British Sports Awards at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London’s Covent Garden on Thursday, December 11, when hundreds of leading figures from sport and media will gather to celebrate another outstanding year of sporting achievement.

With the generous sponsorship of The National Lottery, this glitzy event will be a double anniversary: for The National Lottery, they will be marking 20 years of transforming British sport; for the SJA, this will be our 65th edition of the original national sports awards.

The event will be hosted by our president, Sir Michael Parkinson, and Jim Rosenthal and Sybil Ruscoe will be leading the presentations.

But it will be SJA members who will determine who wins the coveted 2014 Sportsman, Sportswoman and Team awards.

Just as in 2012 and 2013, the cascade of gold medals and world titles has continued during another outstanding year for British sporting achievement across a wide range of sports – which makes the task awaiting the members of the Sports Journalists’ Association all the more difficult.

Each autumn since 1949, members of our Association, the sports writers, editors, photographers and broadcasters who have worked with the nation’s sporting heroes and heroines throughout the year, have cast their selections – first, second and third choice – in a unique poll.

That time has come again, with SJA members really spoiled for choice.

Only full SJA members may vote.

The SJA's 2013 Sportswoman of the Year, Christine Ohuruogu, receives her trophy from The National Lottery chief executive, Andy Duncan
The SJA’s 2013 Sportswoman of the Year, Christine Ohuruogu, received her trophy from The National Lottery chief executive, Andy Duncan

You must place your top three contenders in all three categories – Sportsman, Sportswoman and Team of the Year. You may only vote once, and you can choose whether to submit your vote online (which takes a matter of minutes) or by post. But you cannot use both, and duplicate votes will both be eliminated.

Voting closes at noon on Friday, November 28.

Below are three prompt lists of some of the leading contenders, champions all.

There are no recommendations and nor is there a pecking order. This is merely a prompt to highlight some of the British sporting achievers of 2014 to succeed our 2013 winners Andy Murray, Christine Ohuruogu and the British and Irish Lions.

Who you vote for is entirely up to you, whether they are included on these lists or not (although you will need to ensure that you follow the rules on what qualifies in the team category).

Indeed, if you want to make a case to lobby your fellow SJA members to vote for someone, whether included on this list or not, you are encouraged to write a 500-word piece for this website to make your argument, just email it to

There will be a number of features coming up on the site from SJA members in the next few days highlighting why they will be voting for their chosen sporting achiever of 2014.

In the meantime, here’s a few reminders…

SJA Sportsman of the Year contenders

Mo Farah – European 5,000 and 10,000m title-winner

Carl Froch delivers the winning blow against gallant George Groves
Carl Froch delivers the winning blow against George Groves in their world title bout

Carl Froch – retained the world super-middleweight boxing championship

Adam Gemili – won 200m and sprint relay gold at Europeans, to add to brace of Commonwealth silvers

Dan Greaves – won F42/44 discus at Commonwealth Games and European championships

Nick Matthew – squash world champion added Commonwealth title to his CV

Rory McIlroy – won The Open and US PGA golf majors, as well as member of winning Ryder Cup team

Adam Peaty – won four European swimming titles and broke 50m breaststroke world record to add to two Glasgow golds

Greg Rutherford – first Briton for 50 years to simultaneously hold Olympic, European and Commonwealth long jump titles

Max Whitlock – three gymnastics gold medals at Commonwealth Games, plus gold and silver at Europeans

Bradley Wiggins – our 2012 Sportsman of the Year won cycling’s world time trial title


SJA Sportswoman of the Year contenders

Aged 16, Claudia Frangapane won four Commonwealth golds
Aged 16, Claudia Frangapane won four Commonwealth gold medals

Nicola Adams – first Olympic women’s boxing champion in 2014 won Commonwealth gold

Charlotte Dujardin – dressage rider won two individual gold medals at world championships

Claudia Frangapane – aged 16, she won four gymnastics golds at Commonwealth Games

Kelly Gallagher – won Britain’s first gold medal in partially sighted category in Super G skiing at Winter Paralympics

Fran Halsall – sprint swimmer won five golds in 2014 at European championships and Commonwealth Games

Frankie Jones – won six Commonwealth gymnastic medals for Wales, including ribbon gold

Golden smile: Lizzie Yarnold, Olympic champion
Golden smile: Lizzy Yarnold, Olympic champion

Jo Pavey – 40-year-old mother won her first international title, taking European 10,000m gold in Zurich

Jo Rowsell – three-time gold medallist in 2014, winning individual pursuit world and Commonwealth titles

Emily Scarratt – top points scorer at women’s Rugby World Cup, including 16pts to help England win final

Lizzy Yarnold – Olympic gold medal-winner in skeleton at Sochi Winter Games

SJA Team of the Year contenders

For the Team of the Year, the rules require a team – a unit of two or more persons of both or either sex, competing in the same event – who have contributed most in the year to prestige of British sport on the international stage

England men’s gymnastics – won all-round team gold in artistic gymnastics at Glasgow Commonwealth Games

Emphatic winners, Europe's Ryder Cup team enjoy their moment of glory
Emphatic winners, Europe’s Ryder Cup team enjoy their moment of glory

British triathlon – squad of Lucy Hall, Vicky Holland, Jodie Stimpson, Jonathan and Alistair Brownlee won the mixed relay gold medals at both world championships and Commonwealth Games

England women’s rugby – World Cup-winners

European golf – emphatic Ryder Cup-winners at Gleneagles, captained by Paul McGinley

Great Britain men’s eight – rowing world champions

Great Britain men’s four – Mohammed Sbihi, George Nash, Alex Gregory and Andy Triggs-Hodge took world title in Amsterdam

Great Britain 4x100m mixed medley relay – swimmers broke world record to win European championship in Berlin

Great Britain women’s 4x100m relay team – sprinters won European title, breaking the 34-year-old national record

Great Britain women’s team pursuit – Jo Rowsell, Laura Trott, Katie Archibald and Elinor Barker won the world title for Britain for the sixth time at Cali in February

Helen Glover and Heather Stanning – rowing world champions, women’s pair


And to get you into the mood for the 2014 SJA British Sports Awards, sponsored by The National Lottery, here’s a brief video of our 2013 gala event:




Thu Dec 11: SJA British Sports Awards, sponsored by The National Lottery, at the Grand Connaught Rooms


Mon Mar 23: SJA British Sports Journalism Awards, sponsored by BT Sport, at the Grand Connaught Rooms. Entry forms will be available in October 2014

Wed May 13: SJA York Races Day, sponsored by Ladbrokes, at the Dante Festival. Click here to book your places

Mon Sep 14: SJA Autumn Golf Day, Muswell Hill Golf Club