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    Hameed and Rafiq nominated for British Ethnic Diversity Sports Awards

    Lancashire and England batsman Haseeb Hameed and Yorkshire off-spinner Azeem Rafiq have been nominated for the 2017 British Ethnic Diversity Sports Awards.

    Roses rivals Haseeb Hameed and Azeem Rafiq have been nominated for honours at the 2017 Lycamobile British Ethnic Diversity Sports Awards (BEDSAs).

    Hameed, who became England’s youngest-ever opening batsman when he made his Test debut in India last November after an outstanding summer in county cricket with Lancashire, is one of three contenders for the Youth Sports Trust Young Sportsperson of the Year.

    And Rafiq, a 25-year-old off-spinner from Barnsley who represented England at junior levels, is in contention for the UK Sport Inspirational Performance of the Year in recognition of his comeback with Yorkshire last summer after two years out of the game for personal reasons.

    England fast-bowling coach Ottis Gibson has also been nominated in the England Athletics Coach of the Year category with Brighton football manager Chris Hughton and Sunil Birdy from the Paralympic sport of boccia.

    They follow in the foosteps of Moeen Ali, who was named Sportsman of the Year at the inaugural BEDSAs in 2015, and Adil Rashid, who was one of the three contenders for the main male award won by Lewis Hamilton last year.

    Sir Mo Farah, England rugby union forward Maro Itoje, Olympic Taekwondo silver medallist Lutalo Muhammad and gold medal-winning rower Mohamed Sbihi are shortlisted for the Sportsman of the Year award for 2016.

    Three Olympians – Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill, boxer Nicola Adams and hockey player Sam Quek – are joined by Rio Paralympic gold medalist Kadeena Cox on the shortlist for Sportswoman of the Year.

    The awards are organised by Sporting Equals, the national partner of Sport England and advisors to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, to recognise and celebrate sporting excellence within Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities.

    The winners will be announced at a ceremony hosted by Sir Lenny Henry at the London Hilton Park Lane Hotel on Saturday 18 March.

    The judging panel included Leicestershire CCC chief executive Wasim Khan, and former Surrey and England opener Mark Butcher, as well as former England footballer Sol Campbell, Olympic athletes Derek Redmond and Jason Gardner MBE, and Channel 4 Paralympics host Ade Adepitan MBE.

    Densign White, Sporting Equals Chairman and three-time judo Olympian, said: “We are delighted by the quality of our shortlist for the 2017 BEDSAs and looking forward to celebrating all that is good in BAME sport at the Hilton Park Lane with Sir Lenny Henry and our esteemed sporting guests.”

    For latest news on the upcoming awards and to get involved follow @BEDSAofficial and #BEDSA2017.

    You can also vote for your winner using the BEDSA voting form.

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