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Ben Stokes wins Sports Personality 2019

POSTED ON 16 DECEMBER 2019

The England cricket all-rounder has been voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2019

England cricket won three awards on the night, with Jos Buttler breaking the stumps to seal the World Cup victory voted ‘Greatest Sporting Moment’ and the World Cup team winning ‘Team of the Year.’ The last cricketer to win the award was Andrew Flintoff in 2005.

Stokes won the award after an average run rate of 60.77 during both the World Cup and the Ashes including seven half-centuries and two centuries in the Ashes including the unbeaten 135 in the third test triumph against Australia at Headingley. He also won the Man of the Match in the World Cup final.

Lewis Hamilton came second while sprinter Dina Asher-Smith came third in the vote. Stokes was presented the award by the Princess Royal and Manchester United legend Denis Law at an emotional ceremony in Aberdeen, presented by Gary Lineker.

New-Zealand born Stokes, raised in Durham, said in his acceptance speech: “First of all, I think congratulations to all the nominees. What you’ve managed to achieve as individuals and do for your sport is simply sensational, so well done to you too.

“There’s so many people you feel you have to thank when you’re up here. It’s an individual award, but I play a team sport and one of the great things about that is you get to share special moments with those teammates, coaches and without that effort you put in, I wouldn’t be up here receiving this award, so thank you so much.

“To my amazing wife, Clare. Family to me is more important than what I do for a living. It puts perspective on everything, after the good and bad days they are there for me no matter what. My two kids too, they are awesome: I love you so much.”

Stokes will miss the first warm-up match of England’s Test tour of South Africa, which starts on Tuesday. It is an amazing turnaround after the events two years ago, when Stokes was arrested after a brawl outside a Bristol nightclub. He went on trial and was found not guilty, but it is still something he speaks about and he mentioned it in his acceptance speech.

“Two years ago was a tough time for me in my life, and I’ve had so many people help me through that. My fantastic manager and friend Neil Fairbrother, you’re more than an agent, you’re an incredible man. I don’t know how you’ve put up with Andrew Flintoff and me, you and [Fairbrother’s wife] Audrey, you’re incredible people.”

Ben Stokes joins a choice selection of only four other cricketers to have won the award: Jim Laker, 1956, David Steele, 1975, Ian Botham, 1981 and Flintoff in 2005. Stokes is the third all-rounder to win the award, embodying the never-say-die attitude of both Botham and Flintoff before him.

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