PBA MVP June Mar Fajardo, boxing champ Jerwin Ancajas, Bowling World Cup titlist Krizziah Tabora and pool master Carlo Biado lead the nominees for the 2017 Sportsman of the Year award which SPIN.ph is slated to hand out next month.
The 6-10 Fajardo became the first player in PBA history to win its MVP award four successive times after leading San Miguel Beer to two conference championships before capping his year with a solid showing for Gilas Pilipinas in the 2019 Fiba World Cup qualifiers.
That makes him a top candidate for the singular honor previously won by national coach Chot Reyes in 2013, former Gilas Pilipinas captain Jimmy Alapag in 2014, Alaska star Calvin Abueva in 2015 and Olympic silver medalist Hidilyn Diaz last year.
The winner, as well as SPIN.ph's Top 10 Sports Heroes of 2017, will be announced next week through a series of articles to be posted in the country's first standalone, full-staff sports website.
Fajardo faces stiff opposition from Ancajas, Tabora and Biado, who have brought honor to the country in their respective fields.
Tabora ended a 14-year drought for Filipino bowlers in the Bowling World Cup trophy; Biado became the first Filipino billiards player in seven years to win the World 9-Ball Championship; and Ancajas made three successful defense of his IBF superflyweight title.
Aside from the four, also nominated for the yearend awards were the Adamson Pep Squad, PBA teams San Miguel and Ginebra, San Beda star Robert Bolick, Ateneo Blue Eagles, the La Salle Lady Spikers, Ginebra rookie Jett Manuel, and volleyball standout Dawn Macandili.