‘It makes this event a continuing FARCE and joke’: Ian Poulter leads backlash against BBC Sports Personality of the Year for Matt Fitzpatrick’s shortlist omission… even the US Open winner has been ‘snub’ the show
Ian Poulter has led the backlash against the BBC Sports Personality of the Year for omitting Matt Fitzpatrick from their shortlist for the award.
It was announced on Tuesday that Beth Mead, Ben Stokes, Ronnie O’Sullivan, Jessica Gadirova, Eve Muirhead and Jake Wightman have been nominated for the prize, which will be awarded on Wednesday.
Fitzpatrick is a glaring omission from the running after winning the US Open in June.
Matt Fitzpatrick has been snubbed from the shortlist for BBC Sports Personality of the Year
Poulter, angered by his own omission in 2012, took to Twitter to slam the decision not to include Fitzpatrick.
He tweeted: ‘Sorry but the complete disregard for @MattFitz94 is turning this event into an ongoing farce and joke.
‘I experienced firsthand how ridiculous it was ten years ago. I promised myself that I would never waste time attending or watching again.’
Poulter was fired in 2012 despite his key role in Team Europe’s Ryder Cup victory that year, winning all four of his matches.
Ian Poulter described the show as a ‘constant farce and joke’ in Fitzpatrick’s absence
Poulter was upset not to be on the 2012 shortlist despite his Ryder Cup heroics that year
However, the Telegraph reported last month that Fitzpatrick had withdrawn an invitation to attend the show.
A golfer hasn’t been crowned Sports Personality of the Year since Nick Faldo in 1989 after his first Masters victory.
Rory McIlroy also failed to win the award, finishing second in 2014 to Lewis Hamilton despite winning back-to-back majors at The Open and the PGA Championship.
Justin Rose was nominated for the award after winning the 2013 US Open, but finished ninth out of 10 nominees and the recent cut to six nominations proved costly to Fitzpatrick’s chances of inclusion.
Like Poulter, Rose also criticized the decision while holding up an emoji she asked: ‘One question @BBC Sport @BBCSPOTY – What about @MattFitz94 and his @usopengolf win this year??’
Former BBC presenter Dan Walker commented: ‘I love #SPOTY but I’m surprised there’s no space on the shortlist for @MattFitz94 who has had an incredible year.’
Fans also questioned the decision, with one describing it as a ‘disaster’ while another said it was a ‘sham’ that Fitzpatrick was sacked.
Matthew Fieldsend wrote: ‘Oh no @MattFitz94 is in the nominations! It’s really shocking. How many majors does he have to win in a year to get a nomination. Obviously 1 on US soil alone is not good enough it seems.’
Oli Hunt added: ‘Absolute shame @MattFitz94 isn’t on this list. The BBC may not be able to broadcast much golf and Matt may not be there in person, but @BBCSport’s annual cold shoulder to golf is embarrassing.’
While @markg0366 commented: ‘Just saw #Spoty22 on the shortlist I think you’ve removed @MattFitz94. I just assumed it was an upload to the website problem but it’s great to see it corrected so quickly. You are a diligent license payer at heart.’
Fitzpatrick has ‘decided’ not to appear at the awards show on Wednesday
Nick Faldo was the last golfer to win BBC Sports Personality of the Year 33 years ago