Today saw the announcement of the three male finalists for the 2015 IAAF World Athlete of the Year award. Here are three moments that defined each fella's season.

Usain Bolt

200m, New York, June 13

Bolt’s first appearance on the 2015 Diamond League circuit was, well, underwhelming. He came off the bend well positioned, but never pulled away in the style we’ve come to expect over the years, and finished only a nose in front of 19-year-old Zharnel Hughes in 20.29. That Coach Mills pulled his star charge from planned appearances at national champs and the Paris and Lausanne DLs speaks volumes.

100m, Beijing, August 23

Unfancied, under pressure, and heading face first towards the Mondo within five yards of coming out the blocks in his 100m semi; it looked like Bolt's party was over. Seemingly out of the race, the Jamaican showed poise, resilience, belief and blistering pace to run down the field and still finish in 9.96. There is only one man in the world who could have done that.

200m, Beijing, August 27

With 100m gold secured, questions lingered over Bolt’s appetite to do the double, with most expecting speed demon Justin Gatlin to respond in suitably firey style. He ran hard – very hard – and it showed as he won at a canter. He made it look easy. He always does. It wasn't.

Asthon Eaton

Gotzis, May

Even superhumans are human. Eaton was in line for a decathlon run out for the first time since 2013 in the multi-event mecca of Gotzis, only for a lower back injury to force him to withdraw in suitably magnaminous style (really). Was the ten-event toil too much? Was this a sign that the reigning world (indoor and out) and Olympic champion could be beaten?

Portland, August 8

No. No absolutely not. Don’t be so silly and take that Trey Hardee poster down*. At what looked to us like a glorified beer festival, Eaton posted a pole vault personal best at the FloTrack Throw Down in Portland to prove to everyone he is a man in constant pursuit of perfection. Even with a craft IPA inside of him.

*Only joking, Trey, the poster's going NOWHERE

400m, Beijing, August 28

And so he proved again at the world champs, where he finished with gold and another world record haul of 9,045 points. It was set up by a glorious 45.00 in the 400m at the end of what had been a pedestrian day one. His reaction was priceless. Eaton is a man of steel but is never scared of showing his emotions. We think he was happy.

Christian Taylor

Doha, May 15

DID YOU KNOW... that Christian Taylor's primary source of sponsorship Euros in 2015 was a holistic muscle ointment company named after jungle cats? Really. Anyway. The Diamond League opener in Doha was a precursor to what panned out to be the year of the jumps. Taylor triple jumped to a PB 18.04m, though finished second to Cuban crocodile Pedro “Quadruple P” Pichardo, who hit 18.08m. No win, but Taylor has said that breaking the magical 18 metre-mark that day was the greatest moment of his athletic career

Lausanne, July 9

When Taylor went beyond 18m for the second time he was rewarded with a win. And what a win. Trailing PPPP after four rounds, under pressure Taylor jumped 18.02m to wrestle the lead. He then went to 18.06m with his last effort and Pichardo could not respond. Another personal best and his first win over his biggest rival in 2015.

Beijing, August 27

Another last round jaw-dropper from Taylor. The American’s 18.21m was the best anyone has jumped in a 20 years – the second best of all time behind Jonathan Edwards’ world record – and secured him the world title to go with his Olympic crown. Pass some of that jungle rub!