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National award for Star man

Sheffield Star sports editor Martin Smith has scooped a national award.

The journalist was named Regional Writer of the Year at the British Sports Journalism Awards, for a portflio of stories which included an exclusive on kidnap threats to Sheffield world champion boxer Johnny Nelson.

Martin collected his trophy at a prestgious awards dinner in London’s Portman Square, after beating nominees from the Newcastle Evening Chronicle, Liverpool Daily Post, Yorkshire Evening Post and The Herald in Glasgow.

The awards, sponsored by UK Sport and Laureus and organised by the Sports Journalists’ Association, attracted entries from the cream of the nation’s sports writers and photographers.

In the Sports Team of the Year category, the Yorkshire Evening Post just missed out on a prize after being nominated for its coverage of the Leeds United crisis.

The award went to the Daily Telegraph for its coverage of London’s 2012 Olympic bid.

And in the best sports feature picture category, Paul Pickard from The Sentinel in Stoke-on-Trent was highly commended, missing out on the top prize to Scott Barbour from Getty Images.

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E-mail pastill@nep.co.uk