Few sportsman make a habit of creating history, and fewer still respond to their achievements with an instinctive sense of modesty.
That must be one of the best things about about the crowning of Andy Murray as the BBC’s 2015 Sports Personality of the Year.
What Murray did almost single-handedly over the course of 2015 was something truly remarkable in leading Britain to their first Davis Cup success in 90 years.
None of it came easy to the feisty Scot. What would you expect when Murray had to guarantee winning both his singles matches just to give his country the merest chance of success?
Time after time, he was involved in five-set tussles on Friday, prior to joining his brother, Jamie, for gruelling doubles action the following afternoon, then returning to the singles stage on Sunday.
His performances in these circumstances were mesmerising and his stakhanovite displays rightly earned the approbation of the British public, which was once inclined to treat him with a degree of suspicion.
Some people might respond that Novak Djokovic wasn’t involved in Serbia’s effort this year, but the truth is you can only beat the people placed in front of you and Murray was always up to the task.
There were exceptional showings along the way, whether in the Murrays’ epic struggle with the Australians, or in the fashion with which a powerful French ensemble were dismantled by a duo from Dunblane.
Yet, even in the final, when Jamie was rash enough to stand in his brother’s eyeline, he was given a right royal rollocking from his sibling.
That’s another great thing about the 28-year-old with two major titles under his belt and the promise of more to come. He’s hard on those he feels are wasting their talent, but he’s even harder on himself if his standards drop below the level he expects.
Murray will become a father next year, and, absurdly, the child – when it arrives – has already been tipped to win Wimbledon in the future.
Yet, given the resilience, commitment, never-say-die thrawnness and determination of Murray, perhaps the idea isn’t so mad after all.
Forget about the knighthood for the moment. And just enjoy the unbridled hooraymanship of a Briton boldly going where no living Brit has gone before!