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Conor McGregor crowned 2016 RTÉ Sports Person of the Year

The winner was selected by a public vote.

Image: Tom Hogan/INPHO

CONOR MCGREGOR’S HISTORY-MAKING year was recognised this evening as he was crowned RTÉ Sports Person of the Year for 2016 at the annual awards ceremony.

McGregor beat off stiff competition from Olympic silver medallists Annalise Murphy and Paul O’Donovan to become the first Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) star to receive the accolade.

The Dubliner become the first fighter in the 23-year history of the UFC to hold two titles simultaneously when he dethroned Eddie Alvarez in the lightweight division in November.

McGregor may have suffered his first UFC defeat this year but he avenged that loss to Nate Diaz in spectacular style in August to lay the platform for that historic night at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

The 28-year-old wasn’t in attendance at the awards ceremony in RTÉ but McGregor expressed his gratitude for the recognition via video link.

The ceremony, which was broadcast live on RTÉ One television, recognised Ireland’s sporting elite and their achievements over the last 12 months.

McGregor was among 12 nominees for the night’s top award, a shortlist which also included Jamie Heaslip, Daryl Horgan and Carl Frampton.

The winner was selected by a public vote.

Meanwhile, the O’Donovan brothers were voted Team of the Year, while Stephen Kenny was named Manager of the Year.

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Ryan Bailey

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