Andy Murray was duly crowned BBC Sports Personality of the Year in Leeds on Sunday, capping an historic year which saw him become the first British man in 76 years to win the Wimbledon singles title.
Murray had started the evening as one of the shortest-price favourites in the award's 60-year history, with best odds of 1/19 available from online bookmakers on the night of the ceremony at the city's First Direct Arena.
Murray is the fourth tennis player to win the award and the first since Greg Rusedski pipped Tim Henman to victory in 1997. Virginia Wade and Ann Jones were also crowned in 1977 and 1969 respectively.
The 26-year-old Scot was not able to receive his award in person due to pre-season training commitments in Florida, and instead received it live on air from 18-times grand slam singles champion Martina Navratilova.
Murray joked: "I know I'm sometimes not the easiest person to support but I've had a lot of pressure on me for a long time and I'm just glad I finally managed to break through.
"No matter how excited I try to sound my voice still sounds incredibly boring but I'm actually incredibly excited right now. That's just my voice - I'm sorry.
"I'm sorry I couldn't be there tonight but I couldn't have got in the position I'm in if I didn't take my training and preparation extremely hard - I've been doing it for the last five or six years and I've dedicated probably the last 10 years of my life to this."
Wales and British and Irish Lions full-back Leigh Halfpenny took second place after a year in which he was crowned player of the series in the Lions' history-making Test series triumph over
Australia, with 2010 winner Tony McCoy in third place.
There were further rewards for the Lions who carried off the Team of the Year award while Warren Gatland was crowned Coach of the Year.
Sebastian Vettel succeeded Usain Bolt as Overseas Sports Personality of the Year after a history-making season which saw him claim his fourth consecutive Formula One world title.
Vettel equalled Michael Schumacher's record of 13 race wins in a single season and also matched Alberto Ascari's mark of nine consecutive grand prix wins.