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New Years Honours - football awards thin on ground

Football News 24/7
One thing that was very noticeable about the New Years Honours List was the paucity of awards in the football industry. Surprisingly given the high profile of many recipients, awards for sport make up four per cent of the total. but the most notable sports awards this time around were not in football.

There are CBEs for former triathlete Professor Sarah Springman and for Giles Clarke, chair of the England and Wales Cricket Board. Sports broadcaster Stuart Hall receives an OBE as does golfer Darren Clarke, winner of the British Open.

Other sports figures to receive recognition include Sarah Stevenson, the Taekwondo World Champion, rugby player Christopher Paterson, who holds a record number of appearances for Scotland, golfer Rory Mcilroy, winner of the US Open and Martyn Williams, Wales' most capped rugby forward.

Two knighthoods have been announced for individual contributions to the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics: these go to Charles Allen, who has supported the games in a number of roles and John Armitt, engineer and chair of the Olympic Delivery Authority.

The main 'football' related awards were to Stuart Hall who has becomes an OBE for services to broadcasting and charity.

The 82-year-old, a familiar voice of sport, news and the gameshow It's A Knockout, has enjoyed a career stretching back more than 50 years. He is still a regular contributor to BBC Radio 5 live and was also the original host of A Question Of Sport.

"I'm overjoyed," he told BBC Sport. "It's a great surprise, totally unexpected. I'm grateful."

Former Aston Villa chairman Doug Ellis also recived a knighthood and expressed himself  'delighted and humbled' by the award.

Ellis, who celebrates his 88th birthday on January 3, has been recognised for his services to charity.

The self-made millionaire has invested heavily in hospitals and other charitable projects over the past three decades, with a particular emphasis on youth and sport. Cheshire-born Ellis, stepped down as Villa chairman in 2006.



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