Djokovic, Williams win Laureus awards

Murray beaten by Sandgren in latest match of comeback in Winston-Salem Open

World number ones Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams won the Laureus Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year awards in Berlin on Monday in a big night for tennis.

Djokovic, who fought off competition from Lionel Messi, Usain Bolt and Lewis Hamilton, had a stellar season 2015 in which he won three of the year’s four grand slams. In addition to his three grand slam titles, Djokovic won another seven singles titles. 

Williams too won three grand slams in 2015, and was denied a calendar Grand Slam by Roberta Vinci, who she lost to in the semi-finals of the US Open. The 34-year-old also won two more singles titles, at the Miami Open and Western and Southern Open. 

Williams edged out American footballer Carli Lloyd and Jamaican sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce for the award.

This is the third time that Djokovic and Williams have won their respective awards. The Serb previously won the award in 2012 and 2015, while the American claimed the honour in 2003 and 2010.

Golfer Jordan Spieth claimed the Breakthrough of the Year award after he triumphed at last year’s Masters and U.S. Open, while also winning the FedEx Cup and ending the year as the world number one.

New Zealand’s All Blacks rugby team were awarded the Team of the Year award after they won the Rugby World Cup.

Dutch football legend Johan Cruyff, who died of cancer at the age of 68 last month, was posthumously honoured with the Spirit of Sport award for his work on sport-related projects for underprivileged children around the world. His son, Jordi, received the award.