Carl Frampton questions whether BBC Sports Personality of the the Year shortlist is "anti-Northern Ireland"

Boxer feels he and others should have been considered

Carl Frampton questions whether BBC Sports Personality of the the Year shortlist is "anti-Northern Ireland"

Steve Luciano / AP/Press Association Images

Belfast boxer Carl Frampton has questioned whether the BBC Sports Personality of the Year selection for 2016 is "anti-Northern Ireland".

The WBA (Super) featherweight has also voiced his concern that the award is "anti-boxing".

While he believes Scottish tennis star Andy Murray would be the deserved winner for a 2016 that saw him finish the year World No 1, win his second Wimbledon and retain Olympic gold, he feels Northern Irish achievements have been overlooked.

The boxer believes he would have been nominated on the shortlist had he been English.

Murray and Wales footballer Gareth Bale are the only sportspeople selected from outside England.

Frampton had a strong 2016 which saw him beat Scott Quigg to retain the IBF super-bantamweight title and win the WBA super-bantamweight.

He then moved up a weight class and beat Mexico's Leo Santa Cruz to claim the WBA (Super) featherweight title, which he will defend in a January rematch.

In an interview with BBC Northern Ireland's The Nolan Show, the 29-year-old expressed his feelings about the BBC SPOTY shortlist.

"I feel like there's people on that list that I deserved to be on, in front of. Andy Murray's going to run away with it, he's going to win it and deservedly so, but I still feel out of the 16 I would like to have got in," he said, also citing other Northern Irish sportspeople who could have been included.

"What it looks to me is maybe anti-boxing and maybe anti-Northern Ireland, who knows. I'm not going to cry about it, I'll get on with my career.

"No-one's on it from Northern Ireland - there's five Yorkshire men on it. I feel that one of the three that I mentioned should have got on."

Aside from SPOTY favourite Murray, others selected on the 2016 shortlist of 16 names include Gareth Bale, Olympic distance running champion Mo Farah, Masters golf champion Danny Willett and boxer Nicola Adams, who retained her flyweight boxing title at the Rio Olympics.