Why is SPOTY favourite Emma Raducanu not at tonight’s ceremony?

EMMA RADUCANU has enjoyed a quite unbelievable rise in 2021.

Virtually unknown a year ago, the 19-year-old tennis sensation burst onto the scene with an impressive run at Wimbledon this summer.



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Raducanu is the overwhelming favourite to win this year's SPOTY

Raducanu is the overwhelming favourite to win this year’s SPOTYCredit: PA

And she took her career into the stratosphere by winning the US Open in September, one of most incredible sporting achievements ever by a Brit.

Why is Emma Raducanu not at SPOTY?

As a result of her exploits on the court in 2021, Raducanu is part of the shortlist for this year’s Sport’s Personality of the Year.

And her stunning success mean she is a huge odds-on favourite with the bookies to take the gong.

But Raducanu will not be in the audience to receive the award should she win it later on this evening.

This is due to a positive Covid-19 test on December 13.

The tennis star is in isolation following a positive Covid test

The tennis star is in isolation following a positive Covid testCredit: AFP

As a result, the Brit star is isolating in Abu Dhabi and will not be in the arena tonight.

Even so, BBC bosses weren’t expecting her to attend anyway due to her commitments on the court.

But her isolation means they will be unable to give her a presentation akin to Andy Murray’s when Martina Navratilova gave him his award in 2013.

Raducanu said after her positive test: “I was very much looking forward to playing in front of the fans here in Abu Dhabi, but unfortunately after testing positive for Covid-19, I will have to postpone until the next opportunity.“

“I’m isolating as per rules and hopefully will be able to get back on court soon.”

If she wins SPOTY on Sunday night, Raducanu will become the first female winner since Zara Phillips in 2006.

History maker Emma Raducanu became the first qualifier ever to win a Grand Slam on Saturday night
History maker Emma Raducanu became the first qualifier ever to win a Grand Slam on Saturday night

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Who else is up for the award?

Euro 2020 star Raheem Sterling and Olympic diver Tom Daley in his gold medal-winning year also feature on the list, while Tyson Fury will not be appearing in the ceremony either.