Marton honoured for Prague glory

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Hungary’s athletes had quite a year with their successes at the major European Athletics events - and now they have been rewarded with national awards.

Shot putter Anita Marton was named as the country’s Female Athlete of the Year after a 2015 which was topped by her gold-medal winning performance at the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Prague.

It was quite a performance, too, back in March from Marton who won the title with a national record of 19.23m in the final round to beat Belarusian Yuliya Leantsiuk (18.60m).

Hammer thrower Krisztian Pars, who was fourth at the IAAF world championships in Beijing, and finished second on the European Athletics’ rankings (79.91m), was named Male Athlete of the Year.

The under-23 category saw awards for medallists from the European Athletics U23 Championships.

The titles went to heptathlete Xenia Krizsan, who won gold in Tallinn with 6303 points, and Bence Pasztor (74.06m) who was third in the hammer.

And their hammer throwing legacy was shown to the full in 2015 as the juniors awards proved.

Bence Halasz won the men’s title after his gold at the European Athletics Junior Championships in Eskilstuna in July with a championship record of 79.60m, while Reka Gyuratz won the female award after a summer where her 70.39m was a national under-23 and junior record and topped the European Athletics’ junior lists.

European Female Athlete of the Year Dafne Schippers has been named as the Netherlands’ Sportswoman of the Year after her summer of 200m world gold and 100m silver.

And in a night of double celebration for her in Amsterdam on Tuesday, her long-time coach Bart Bennema won the country’s Coach of the Year title.

Another of Europe’s leading track and field athletes is among the favourites for one of the biggest end-of-year titles in her country.

Great Britain’s Jessica Ennis-Hill, who came back to the sport this summer to win world heptathlon gold after giving birth to son Reggie in 2014, is in the running for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year which will be announced in Belfast on Sunday.

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