Public urged to cast nominations
Sports fans, sports clubs, sports bodies and schools in Northern Ireland have been urged to nominate their top sporting stars for 2016 with the launch of the Belfast Telegraph Sports Awards.
The prestigious awards honour Northern Ireland's top sporting achievers in both the amateur and professional arenas
The gala ceremony, which attracts some of our most famous and successful sporting heroes, will take place in Belfast in the New Year.
The Sports Awards celebrate the outstanding achievements of local sports people from grassroots to elite sport and the public can nominate in each of the 12 categories by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Nominations can also be made by post to Belfast Telegraph Sports Awards, C/O JComms, Sylvan House, 232-240 Belmont Road, Belfast, BT4 2AW.
When nominating please include the name of the person or team you are putting forward for consideration, the reasons why you feel they should win an award and the category you believe they should be included in as well as your own contact details.
The closing date for nominations is December 9.
Nominations will be judged and shortlisted next month and finalists will be invited to come along to the glittering awards evening.
As well as the coveted Sports Star of the Year title, category awards include Manager/Coach of the Year, won last time by Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill, Young Team and Young Player of the Year, the Malcolm Brodie Player of the Year, Local Heroes and Sportsperson with a Disability. Other categories are the Special Recognition Award, George Best Breakthrough, Team of the Year and the WJ 'Paddy' Patterson Award for services to sport presented by the NI Sports Forum.
We will also be inducting another Northern Ireland sporting legend into the Belfast Telegraph Hall of Fame. Your suggestions will be very welcome.
Former Northern Ireland World Cup skipper and current Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill said he was 'overwhelmed and honoured' to be brought into the Hall of Fame at the 2015 awards ceremony.
Belfast Telegraph Group Sports Editor Jim Gracey said: "This year has been an amazing year for Northern Ireland sport. All around the world our sporting heroes have excelled.
"It is fantastic to honour these stars at the Belfast Telegraph Sports Awards, which is always a wonderful occasion, and I would really encourage everyone, from our readers to sports governing bodies, to put forward nominees for consideration from both the grassroots and elite sports sectors.
"Northern Ireland sports stars continue to give the country something to feel extremely proud about and year on year the judges face a huge challenge deciding who should be shortlisted and who should win each award. I'm looking forward to a great line-up of nominations."