The 2020 BBC Sports Personality of the Year (SPOTY) Awards are only a few days away, and we have the latest odds for the award, courtesy of Paddy Power.
The shortlist for the award has been announced for the award ceremony and there are six people on the list. The winner is determined on the night by a public telephone and online vote.
England cricketer Ben Stokes won the 2019 award. The all-rounder was an integral part of an England side that won the World Cup for the first time with a dramatic super over victory against New Zealand at Lord’s.
With the 2020 sporting calendar now looking quite different and less international events taking place, who is in the running for the 2020 award?
When Is SPOTY?
Sunday 20th December
Who’s In The Running?
Lewis Hamilton – 2/9
The 2020 Formula One World Championship is one of the few major international sporting events that took place over the last few months and with the Championship concluding in November, Lewis Hamilton is in with a chance of capturing the publics’ attention and taking his 2nd Sports Personality of the Year award.
Hamilton has already equaled the all-time record for career Formula 1 victories by winning the Eifel Grand Prix. It was his 91st win after which Schumacher’s son Mick presented Hamilton with one of his father’s old helmets, from his last F1 season with Mercedes in 2012, to recognise the achievement.
Hamilton is currently leading the Drivers’ Standings, so he is well on course to have a highly successful 2020.
Ronnie O’Sullivan – 13/2
Winning his 6th World Championship this year proved that very little can ever hold Ronnie O’Sullivan back.
The Rocket’s win draws him level with snooker greats Steve Davis and Ray Reardon for the number of world titles. Only Stephen Hendry has won more with seven titles.
Not one for the crowds or limelight, O’Sullivan said ‘For this year’s World Championships, there was no visitors, no guests, no one at the stage door.
“I could get in and out of Sheffield and I’ve never felt so relaxed there in my life”. He has a huge number of fans so could a SPOTY be on the cards for 2020?
Jordan Henderson – 9/1
The Liverpool Captain has had another fantastic season and finished the season by lifting the Premier League. He has already won The Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year, and this might not be the only individual award he wins this year.
Tyson Fury – 14/1
The Heavyweight Champion of the World has been a controversial figure at times. Yet, by defeating Deontay Wilder in February 2020, he catapulted his way into the attention of the public and has given himself a great chance of winning the award.
His next fight is on 19th December which comes six days after the winner of SPOTY has been announced. How he has asked to be removed from the shortlist saying he was the “people’s champion and I’ve no need for verification or any awards”.
So far the BBC has not removed him and he is still in contention but will he have done enough over the year to bring in the votes?
SPOTY Outsiders 2020
Hollie Doyle – 20/1
A fantastic jockey, in October 2020, Doyle became the first female jockey to ride a winner on Champions Day at Ascot, when she steered Trueshan to victory in the Long Distance Cup.
Absolutely delighted to have been nominated for BBC Sports Personality Of The Year Award! Thank you all AGAIN for the lovely messages & support!😀🙏🏻🐎#SPOTY @BBCSport @SkySportsRacing pic.twitter.com/y2fXRJ3W7K
— Hollie Doyle (@HollieDoyle1) December 1, 2020
She followed that up with her first Group 1, winning the Champions Sprint on Glen Shiel. The accolades kept rolling in and in November she was named The Sunday Times sportswoman of the year.
She finished the season fourth in the Flat Jockeys’ Championship, the highest ever ranking for a woman.
Stuart Broad – 200/1
Despite a shortened Summer for Broad and every England Cricketer, the England Bowler picked up his 500th Test wicket.
There are still a few Tests left to play this year and more success over the next few weeks and months could lead to him getting more media and public attention.
Past SPOTY Winners
Ben Stokes – 2019
An incredible 2019 for Ben Stokes saw him with the award after being an integral part of England’s Cricket World Cup-winning side and the Ashes squad. Who will ever forget those incredible performances at Lords and Headingley? Watch the moment Ben Stokes was announced as the winner.
Geraint Thomas – 2018
The 2018 Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas rode on a wave of public support to win the award. He was the fourth cyclist since 2008 to win the award after Sir Chris Hoy, Mark Cavendish and Sir Bradley Wiggins.
Mo Farah – 2017
The Olympic hero had been a 50/1 outsider with bookmakers to win the award, with the boxer Anthony Joshua considered the overwhelming favourite. Perhaps an indication that any of the contenders can take home the 2020 award.
Sports Personality History and Trends
Sir Christopher John Chataway was the first winner of the award, back in 1954. This came following a Gold Medal in the ‘3 Miles’ event at the 1954 Commonwealth Games.
Bobby Moore was the first footballer to win the award in 1966, being an integral part of the first and only England football team to win a major honour clearly helped his chances. England will be one of the favourites to win the 2021 European Championships, so several players could fancy their chances of winning the 2021 award.
Andy Murray currently has the most award wins with 3. He won it last in 2016 when he won an Olympic Gold Medal alongside the Wimbledon title.
Since inception, 18 SPOTY winners have come from Athletics world, and only five winners have been footballers. There has also been an obvious shortage of female recipients of the award so will that change this year?
Looking through the list of winners, there does seem to be specific visible trends. Being part of a successful team or event can undoubtedly increase your chances. Bradley Wiggins took home the 2012 award, but that could have gone to any of Team GB’s heroes from the 2012 Olympics. Andrew Flintoff won in 2005 after playing an important role in England regaining the Ashes.
Tips for Sports Personality of the Year
Lewis Hamilton is also a decent shout but with odds of 1/4 a bet on him doesn’t offer much value for money. For those wanting bigger odds, Hollie Doyle at 25/1 might be worth a look. We love our racing in the UK and the lack of female representation in the SPOTY short list may just give her a boost with the public.
The BBC Sports Team of the Year Award is also presented on the night. The current holders are the England Cricket team. Unlike the main award, it’s not decided by public vote.
With many sporting competitions set to be decided over the few months, there is plenty of time for contenders to emerge. Having just ended their 30-year wait for a league title, Liverpool will fancy their chances of lifting more silverware this year.
Head to Paddy Power for all the latest odds on the 2020 Sports Personality of the Year.