Giggs beats Button to top Beeb gong

The 36-year-old Manchester United winger is the most decorated

player in English football history and in May won a record 11th

Premier League winners’ medal. Button, 29, like Lewis Hamilton a

year ago, may have won the world drivers’ championship but had to

settle for second place on the rostrum behind Giggs. Jessica Ennis,

the 23-year-old from Sheffield who won gold in the heptathlon at

the World Athletics championships in the summer, finished third.

The awards were held in front of an audience of 11,000 people at

the Sheffield Arena. Giggs said his longevity in the game had

helped his popularity among the public. “Perhaps I’ve become more

appreciated as I have got older,” said the Welshman. “It’s unusual

for a 36-year-old to be playing with a team like Manchester United

for 20 years but I am enjoying it and long may it continue.” United

manager Sir Alex Ferguson revealed on Friday that Giggs will be

offered a new contract for next season and he added: “It was the

first I had heard of it the other day so I was quite pleased. “My

contract ends at the end of the year but hopefully there will be

another year after that.” England’s Ashes heroes were named Team of

the Year for their achievement in beating Australia. Captain Andrew

Strauss said: “It’s a truly great honour for us and the lads are

chuffed to bits. “It has been a long and arduous 12 months with

lots of ups and downs and we have stuck together through some

pretty tough times. That, ultimately, is what got us over the line

in the Ashes.” Fabio Capello was named coach of the year after the

Italian guided England to qualification for the World Cup in a

near-faultless campaign. Capello said: “I am proud to win this

award but I want to share this with all my staff and the players

who will be with me next year in South Africa.” Jamaican sprinter

Usain Bolt was named overseas sports personality for the second

consecutive year. Bolt lowered his own world records in the 100 and

200 metres to 9.58 and 19.19 seconds respectively in Berlin. Seve

Ballesteros won the lifetime achievement award for his contribution

to golf and the Helen Rollason Award for outstanding achievement in

the face of adversity went to Major Phil Packer, who suffered

spinal injuries while serving in Iraq and took 13 days to walk the

London Marathon on crutches. The unsung hero award went to Doreen

Adcock, a 72-year-old from Milton Keynes who has been teaching

swimming for the last 35 years.