A win at Wimbledon, nine titles including five straight at the end of the year, another Olympic Gold medal and two other Grand Slam Final appearances too. Anything else? Oh yeah, he’s now number one in the world as well. There wasn’t much Andy Murray didn’t achieve in 2016, capitalising on a slight slump in the form of Novak Djokovic to sweep all before him in the closing months of the season. The bookies favourite for an unprecedented third SPOTY title.
The young man from Derby won the first Olympic Gold in the pool by a male GB athlete in 28 years in Rio, annihilating his own 100m breaststroke record in the process. Furthermore, Peaty was part of the relay team which claimed silver in the 4x100m Medley behind team USA. Peaty’s split for the team event was even faster than his individual world record.
Richardson-Walsh stepped down as England and GB captain following 13 years of service and 375 games. She saved her best until last, however, leading team GB to a maiden Olympic Hockey Gold in Rio following a dramatic final against the Netherlands. Her wife Helen was also among the team, as the pair become the first same sex couple to win an Olympic title in the same final.
Good things come to those who wait. And nobody waited longer for an Olympic Gold than Skelton, who finally reached the top step of the podium in Rio after seven attempts. The rider from Warwick prevailed on his horse Big Star after a six man sudden-death jump off. All of this after retiring 16 years ago following a fall which broke his neck in two places.
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