It's your final three!
Thousands of votes have been registered over the past four weeks as you, the Derry public, have picked your favourite for the Sports Personality of the Year 2017.
Some big names have come and gone and it is now down to three deserving individuals, each of whom have had a year to remember.
So, who will it be?
Lisa Curran (Crossfit)
Mother-of-three Lisa Curran is a rising name in the sport of ‘Crossfit’, a relatively new phenomenon that is slowly but surely making itself known worldwide.
Lisa, who trains at the only Crossfit gym in Derry’s Pennyburn Industrial Estate, is in her sixth year of the sport and has progressed to such a level that she finished 3rd in the United Kingdom at the Crossfit Open Games at the start of 2017. If that is not impressive enough, Lisa’s achievements earned her 12th place in Europe overall and 103rd best in the entire world, not a bad achievement for someone with three boys under ten years of age.
Lisa’s recent achievements in the Crossfit Open Games qualified her for the Masters Online Qualifiers, a worldwide event that she has never attempted before.
2017 ended on a high with a podium finish at the North West Fitness Championship.
Paddy McLaughlin (Football)
It has been an unforgettable year for Paddy McLaughlin and Institute whichever way you look at it. Coming into his first managerial role in the summer following Kevin Deery’s departure, McLaughlin had big shoes to fill.
Whatever happened on the field, no one could have predicted what would happen to the Riverside Stadium, which was incredibly destroyed during storms in August. ‘Stute had to play the first few months of the season away from home and since then they have switched between Wilton Park and the Limavady Showgrounds. Despite this upheaval, ‘McLaughlin has led his team to the top of the Bluefin Championship, where they sit clear with games in hand to play over their opponents, a quite significant achievement for the former defender. ‘Stute may have no home to call their own, but in McLaughlin, they have the right man to guide them through this uncertain time.
Alan Grant (Hurling)
It was a busy 2017 for Alan Grant that came with mixed success on both the hurling and football field.
Under the new management of Collie McGurk and in a transitional year where the Oak Leaf were trying to right the wrongs of 2016, Grant came to the fore as a key player and that was shown back in June in the Nicky Rackard final where he hit 1-5 at Croke Park as Derry made light work of Armagh on a 3-22 to 2-15 scoreline. The win sealed their return to the Christy Ring this year.
His efforts also earned him a place in the prestigious Shinty panel – and Irish team of 20 players who took on Scotland in the annual international game back in November.
At club level, it was a mixed bag for Na Magha and Grant, who claimed an emphatic victory over Coleraine in the Derry championship final, but are still searching for an Ulster title.
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