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Laureus Award Hopefuls Part of Most Competitive Field Ever

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Usain Bolt. Photo: Flickr/doctorcliff

The contest for the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year Award promises to be one of the most competitive ever. Following a ballot by the world’s media, nominees include Rio de Janeiro heroes Usain Bolt, already a three-time Laureus winner, 5k and 10k Olympic champion Mo Farah and tennis gold medal winner Andy Murray. Football is also well represented with Cristiano Ronaldo being involved in three nominations; both individually and through his teams Portugal and Real Madrid. Also shortlisted with Ronaldo are basketball duo Stephen Curry and LeBron James. Olympians fill all six nomination places for the Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year Award, including Americans Simone Biles, Katie Ledecky and Allyson Felix, German world tennis No.1 Angelique Kerber, Jamaican sprint star Elaine Thompson and British cyclist Laura Kenny.

American swimmer Michael Phelps. Photo: Fernando Frazão/Agência Brasil

Michael Phelps, the most successful Olympian ever, heads the Nominees in the Laureus World Comeback of the Year category, after winning another five golds and a silver medal in Rio. Others selected by the media are Spain’s high jumper Ruth Beitia, Argentina’s Davis Cup winner Juan Martin del Potro, British show jumper Nick Skelton, Mauritius triathlete Fabienne St Louis and Norwegian skier Aksel Lund Svindal.

In another category, Mercedes AMG Petronas are nominated for the third straight year for the Laureus World Team of the Year Award, along with three football teams; European Champions Portugal, Champions League winners Real Madrid and Neymar inspired Olympic gold medal winners Brazil. American teams Chicago Cubs, winner of their first baseball World Series for 108 years, and NBA Champions Cleveland Cavaliers, led by LeBron James, are also shortlisted.

The Chicago Cubs celebrate after defeating the Cleveland Indians in Game 7 of the 2016 World Series on Wednesday. Photo: Chicago Tribune

The eventual winners, as voted for by members of the Laureus World Sports Academy, will be revealed in Monaco on February 14. For the first time ever, sports fans will have the chance to make their voices heard in a brand new Best Sporting Moment of the Year Award, which will celebrate the power of sport.

This story first appeared in the blog, The Sport Intern. The editor is Karl-Heinz Huba of Lorsch, Germany. He can be reached at ISMG@aol.com. The article is reprinted here with permission of Huba. 

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