Arise ‘Sir Andy’, ‘Sir Mo’ as Murray, Farah knighted

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Andy Murray with the winner's trophy after his men's singles final victory over Canada's Milos Raonic on the last day of the 2016 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, in this July 10 file photo. (AFP)
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Gold medalist Britain's Mo Farah celebrating near the podium for the men's 5000m during the athletics event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro in this Aug. 21 file photo (AFP).
Updated 31 December 2016
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Arise ‘Sir Andy’, ‘Sir Mo’ as Murray, Farah knighted

LONDON: Wimbledon champion Andy Murray and Olympic gold medallist Mo Farah will each receive a knighthood in the New Year Honours.
Murray’s knighthood caps a dream season for the Scot, who finished as the year-end world number one for the first time after ending Novak Djokovic’s long spell at the top.
The 29-year-old clinched a second Wimbledon title in July before successfully defending his Olympic singles crown and then winning a first ATP Tour Finals crown to stop Djokovic regaining first place.
Murray, previously honored with an OBE in 2012, became a father for the first time in February and earlier this month was voted the BBC Sports Personality of the Year for a record third time.
“Obviously it is the highest honor you can get in this country. But I feel like I’m too young for something like that,” said Murray before the announcement was made on Friday.
“When I win any award or am presented with anything it is nice because it is recognition for what you have given your life to — up to now anyway.
“I am still young and there are still a lot of things that can go wrong. I could still mess up and make mistakes. I am just trying to keep doing what I am doing, working hard and achieving stuff.”
Farah receives his knighthood after he retained his 5,000 and 10,000 meters titles at the Rio Olympics, becoming the first British track and field athlete to win four Olympic gold medals.
The 33-year-old Somalia-born athlete is already a CBE following his double gold at London 2012.
“I’m so happy to be awarded this incredible honor from the country that has been my home since I moved here at the age of eight,” Farah said.
“Looking back at the boy who arrived here from Somalia, not speaking any English, I could never have imagined where I would be today. It’s a dream come true.
“I’m so proud to have had the opportunity to race for my country and win gold medals for the British people, who have been my biggest supporters throughout my career.
“My successes have only been possible because of their support and the commitment, sacrifices and love of my amazing family and the team around me now and over the years.”
Para-equestrian Lee Pearson is also knighted after adding gold from the Individual Freestyle grade Ib and silver in Dressage to his golds in Beijing and London.
The decorated Paralympian already held the MBE, OBE and CBE for services to equestrianism and to disabled sport.
Damehoods go to heptathlete Jessica Ennis-Hill and rower Katherine Grainger, who both retired from competitive action following the 2016 Rio Games.
Ennis-Hill, who had returned to compete in Rio after becoming a mother, has been made a Dame for services to athletics.
The 30-year-old from Sheffield added silver at the 2016 Games to her gold at London, and was already a CBE.
Grainger receives her damehood for services to sport and charity, the veteran rower having come out of retirement to compete in Rio, where she won silver in the double sculls alongside Vicky Thornley.


Saudi weightlifter Mansour Al-Saleem wins record 3 Asian gold medals

Updated 21 April 2019
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Saudi weightlifter Mansour Al-Saleem wins record 3 Asian gold medals

  • Al-Saleem won three gold medals in the snatch, jerk and combination in the 55kg weight category
  • The competition in Ningbo, in China's eastern province of Zhejiang, will continue for the next 8 days

RIYADH: Saudi national Mansour Abdulrahim Al-Saleem won three gold medals in the snatch, jerk and combination, ranking the first in the 55 kg weight category, at the Asian Weightlifting Championships in China.

He lifted 122 kilograms to head the standings, with Kazakhstan’s Arli Chontey and Malaysia’s Azroy Hazalwafie following on 113kg and 112kg, respectively.

The clean and jerk discipline saw Al-Saleem again head the leaderboard on 140kg.

Hazalwafie lifted just four kilograms less in second, while Sri Lanka’s Dilanka Isuru Kumara was third on 135kg.

Al-Saleem’s efforts in both disciplines saw him convincingly clinch the overall title with a combined 262kg.

He finished ahead of Hazalwafie on 248kg, while Chontey placed third on 246kg.

The champion set a new achievement by winning the first Asian gold medal in weightlifting for the Kingdom.

The president of the Saudi Weightlifting Federation, Mohammed Al-Harbi, thanked King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, sports officials and the Saudi people for supporting the field, which led to “such a great achievement.”

Amidst an arena full of a host of Olympic and international champions, Saudi Arabia’s national anthem was played and the Kingdom’s flag was raised, as Al-Saleem praised the ability of Saudi sportsmen in all international and regional sports sectors.

A further eight days of competition will continue for the next 8 days in China's eastern city of Ningbo, in Zhejiang province. Medals will be won across 20 categories, 10 for men and 10 for women.