Who should win Sports Personality? It’s the question we haven’t been able to shake since the shortlist was announced. Like the bleary-eyed fan who feels the need to tell you mid match why his team’s striker has the scoring ability of a giraffe in flip flops, we can’t help making vociferous cases for who deserves to be better than the rest after this extraordinary year. Even the sports stars themselves have been at it as our interviews with the contenders show. The question will finally be put to bed this Sunday evening (7.30pm, BBC1). Lineker, Barker and Balding – sounds more like a firm of solicitors doesn’t it? – will guide the sporting festivities as we bid farewell to 2012.
Back in the world of live sport, now retired cricketers and loveable has-beens have vacated the ring boxing can return to business as usual on Sunday morning as Amir Khan fights Carlos Molina (first bell 5am, Sky Sports 1). Freddie Flintoff and Ricky Hatton may have grabbed the bulk of November’s headlines, but if Khan can’t win in Los Angeles December’s back pages may ring out the end of our love affair with the bright hope from Bolton, who’s already lost his last two fights.
Swansea play Spurs on Sunday (1.30pm, SS1) in the Premier League.Tottenham’s2-1 loss to Everton despite being up 1-0 after 90 minutes checked what was beginning to look like a strong top four challenge. Defoe in particular has had no problems finding the net with five goals in his last five matches, but Swansea have an even sharper shooter in Michu, who’s scored six in six.
Newcastle’s form on the other hand has been woeful, with one solitary win in ten matches. The only positive they can take going into their Saturday game against Man City (12.45pm, SS2) is that City may still be feeling deflated after Samir Nasir’s wimpish performance in the wall cost them dear in last week’s derby.
Nasri’s former team Arsenal also looking decidedly wet after Bradford humiliated them in the League Cup last Tuesday. Gervinho’s open goal miss was laughable – Arsene Wenger failed to see the funny side, and for good reason. If the Arsenal manager can’t ensure a win against relegation threatened Reading on Monday (8pm, SS1) then his 16 year reign will have sunk to a new, career-threatening low.
Boxing, football and England’s flourishing play against India in the cricket (continuing from 6am Saturday, SS1) remain the preserve of satellite TV. BBC keep the Olympic faith with coverage of the Gymnastics World Cup this Saturday (1.30pm, BBC1), where Team GB’s Bronze medallist Kristian Thomas reminds us that not all Olympic athletes have been cashing in on post-2012 celebrity. Will Louis Smith be watching?
Also on TV
Heineken Cup Rugby: Ospreys v Toulouse (Saturday, Sky Sports 1, k/o 1.45pm)
Leinster v Clermont Auvergne (Saturday, Sky Sports 1, k/o 3.40pm)
Ulster v Northampton Saints (Saturday, Sky Sports 1, k/o 6pm)
Castres v Glasgow Warriors (Sunday, Sky Sports 2, k/o 12.45pm)
Saracens v Toulouse (Sunday, Sky Sports 2, k/o 3pm)
Premier League Football: West Bromwich Albion v West Ham (Sunday, Sky Sports 1, k/o 1.30pm)
League Cup Football: Leeds Utd v Chelsea (Wednesday, Sky Sports 1, 7.45pm)