William presents Murray & Phelps with Sports Personality of the Year Awards

The Duke of Cambridge presented the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards last night, and helped hand out prizes to swimmer Michael Phelps and tennis ace Andy Murray. Well, sort of.

Jessica Ennis Hill, joined by Prince William on stage, announced Murray had won, then handed over to a video link of the star and his award in Miami.

This is the third time the Scot has won SPOTY, a record. He was handed a replica trophy by Lennox Lewis. Murray won back in 2013 and 2015, and topped off his 2016 Olympic gold, second Wimbledon title and becoming tennis’ world number one with the third accolade.

The tennis player received his OBE from Prince William at Buckingham Palace in 2013.

Triathlete Alistair Brownlee came in second and show jumper Nick Skelton third.

“It’s been a great year for British sport and I am so proud to have been a part of it,” said 29-year-old Murray. “A huge thanks to my wife and my daughter – she won’t know what this means yet, but maybe in a few years she will.

“Actually, I’ve got a bone to pick with my wife because about an hour ago she told me she’d voted for Nick Skelton. Not smart from her with Christmas coming up,” he quipped.

Earlier in the show, hosted in Birmingham, it was the Duke’s job to present Michael Phelps with his accolade, for lifetime achievement after totalling 23 gold medals (28 over all) by Rio 2016. The swimmer is retiring after his historic career.

Some, however, criticised William’s delivery, which seemed a little unprepared.

The father to George and Charlotte posed for a photo with the group of British nominees, and got chatting to Phelps about fatherhood, some of the equestrian athletes about his grandmother’s love of horses, and the recent Team GB reception at Buckingham Palace where ‘the hockey girls were the noisiest’.

The other awards: 

Young Sports Personality of the Year: Ellie Robinson: the Swimmer claimed gold in the S6 50m butterfly final with a Games record at the Rio Paralympics, aged 15.

Team of the Year: Leicester City: the Foxes stunned the world with their shock Premier League triumph last season.

Coach of the Year: Claudio Ranieri: Leicester’s Italian manager was named top coach after overseeing the remarkable campaign.

Overseas Sports Personality of the Year: Simone Biles: the 19-year-old American broke new ground with a series of dazzling routines as she secured four gold medals at the Rio Olympics.

Sport’s Unsung Hero: Boxing club founder Marcellus Baz provides free classes to hundreds of young people at his Nottingham School of Boxing, with some even dreaming of reaching the Olympics.

Helen Rollason: Ben Smith: the charity runner completed 401 marathons in 401 days after battling back from injury to pass his fundraising target of £250,000.

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