Samaranch most influential

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Juan Antonio Samaranch, the former International Olympic Committee president who died in 2010, was the most influential sports executive of the last 20 years, according to the results of Sportcal's poll 20 Years of Sport: Who Was the Most Influential?

The results of the poll were unveiled at 11 May's 20 Years of Sport event held by Sportcal at the offices of Clifford Chance in London, where almost 200 delegates came together to reflect on the last 20 years of sport and discuss and debate what the next 20 years might look like. For a taste of the debate, visit http://20ys. sportcal. com/Home/video. aspx to watch a series of short video clip interviews with some of the top names in the sports industry. Sportcal is indebted to Sport Event Denmark for facilitating the interviews. Full video coverage of the event will also be available online next week, courtesy of deltatre Media, the sports digital services company. Sportcal would also like to thank Clifford Chance, plus keynote speaker Patrick Nally and all of the partners, moderators, panellists and participants at 20 Years of Sport for contributing to a stimulating and informative day of education, intelligence, knowledge exchange and networkingEurosport was the Networking Partner for the lunch and afternoon coffee break while Vero sponsored the morning's networking session. Global Sports Jobs was Supporting Partner and exhibited and presented in the Live Lounge during the event. AISTS was Education Partner and researched trends in sport in the last 20 years which were used during the event and will shortly be published. Getty Images was Media Partner of the event and recorded still images of the day's activities. Mike Laflin, Sportcal's chief executive, said: " [The] event was a fitting way to celebrate Sportcal's 20 years in sport, with illuminating debate from our speakers and panellists and great support from our partners and from all of the participants at 20 Years of Sport, including old and new friends of Sportcal. I'd like to thank them all as we head into Sportcal's next 20 years in the industry!" In the poll, Samaranch narrowly beat Mark McCormack, founder of IMG and (many would say) of the entire sports industry, into second place, after the poll attracted almost 500 responses (albeit some had to be discarded because of blatant attempts to rig the poll with orchestrated campaigns to 'vote for the boss'). Voters were asked to give their top three nominations, in order of merit, along with their reasons for choosing them. Three points were awarded for a first–place vote, two points for a second–place vote and one point for a third–place vote. Samaranch emerged victorious with 101 points to McCormack's 82 points, albeit Samaranch attracted just two more first–place votes than McCormack. In third place, FIFA's Sepp Blatter was the most highly–ranked living sports executive/official. Voters were able to nominate any sports industry leader of the past 20 years, alive or dead, from such organisations as sports agencies, sports federations, government departments, leagues, teams, broadcasters, sponsors, service companies, events organisers, sports cities etc.

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