LONDON – Track and field legend Usain Bolt and compatriot Elaine Thompson are among nominees for the prestigious Laureus World Sports awards.
Bolt has been nominated for the World Sportsman-of-the-Year and Thompson has made the cut for the World Sportswoman-of-the-Year.
Bolt, a three-time winner of the World Sportsman-of-the-Year award, successfully defended his Olympic 100 metres, 200 metres and 4x100m relay titles to leave Rio as one of the biggest heroes of the 2016 Olympic Games.
The 30-year-old Jamaican previously won the award in 2009, 2010 and 2013 – and faces a stiff challenge to collect it again.
Rio Olympics 5,000 and 10,000 metres champion Mo Farah and tennis gold medal winner Andy Murray have been shortlisted, along with football megastar Ronaldo and NBA basketball superstars Lebron James and Stephen Curry.
Thompson is one of six Olympic champions nominated for Sportswoman-of-the-Year award. The 24-year-old Jamaican became a household name following her commanding sprint-double capture of the 100 and 200 titles in Rio. It is her first nomination for the award.
The contest for the Sportswoman-of-the-Year award also promises to be very competitive. Challenging her are a trio of Americans – gymnast Simone Biles, swimmer Katie Ledecky and quarter-mile silver medallist Allyson Felix – as well as World tennis No.1 Angelique Kerber of Germany and British cyclist Laura Kenny.
In another competitive category, Mercedes AMG Petronas are nominated for the third straight year for the 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. The Chicago Cubs, who won their first baseball World Series for 108 years, and NBA champions Cleveland Cavaliers, are also shortlisted.
Laureus also presents awards for Comeback-of-the-Year, Breakthrough-of-the-Year whose nominees includes Nico Rosberg, retired Formula 1 racing teammate of Lewis Hamilton, Sports Personality-of-the-Year with a Disability and Action Sports Personality-of-the-Year.
For the first time ever, sports fans will have the chance to make their voices heard in a brand new category – Best Sporting Moment-of-the-Year award which will celebrate the power of sport.
The nominees were selected following a ballot by the world’s sports media. The winners will be announced at the Laureus World Sports Awards ceremony on 14 February in Monaco.