The Independent's Robert Hallam is Sports Photographer of the Year

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The Independent Online
Robert Hallam, of the Independent and the Independent on Sunday, was last night named Sports Photographer of the Year. Hallam, 34, won both the portfolio category and the overall award. The awards are organised by the Sports Council and sponsored by Reebok.

Hallam (right), who submitted eight black and white photographs, also won the David Worthy Memorial Trophy, an award for cycling photography. His entry was printed by John Luff, of JL Photos.

Hallam has worked for the Independent since 1989, and for the Independent on Sunday since its launch in 1990. He started working for the Independent after taking a four-year photography course at the Plymouth College of Art and Design.

His award maintains the Independent's reputation for excellence in its sports photographs. In the nine years since the newspaper's launch, Independent photographers have won the Sports Photographer of the Year award four times.

David Ashdown, our chief sports photographer, has won the award twice and was runner-up last year, when he won the black and white portfolio category. Last year he also won the European Sports Photographer of the Year award.

Ashdown and his colleague Peter Jay - another former Sports Photographer of the Year - have also earned worldwide recognition. Both have won the overall award in the International Olympic Committee's Best of Sport competition.

SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR COMPETITION: Sports Photographer of the Year: Robert Hallam. Portfolio: Robert Hallam (highly commended: Simon Bruty). Picture of the Year: Darren Walsh (highly commended: Clive Brunskill). Specialist Portfolio: Pascal Rondeau (highly commended: Chris Turvey, Nick Potts). Sport for All Picture of the Year: Chris Turvey. David Worthy Memorial Award: Robert Hallam.

Prize-winning portfolio: Cambridge trial eights compete for Boat Race places (above); clay pigeon shooting at the British Skeet Championships (top right); Greg Norman in the shade at Sunningdale (bottom right); the national cyclo-cross championships at a muddy Southampton (below)