Great living legends of sport, past and present, to be guests of honour at 16th Laureus World Sports Awards

Film and TV star Benedict Cumberbatch to host Laureus Awards 

Laureus World Sports Awards to be held in Shanghai on April 15


Chinese basketball giant Yao Ming and Sachin Tendulkar, the greatest cricketer of the modern generation, will be among the high profile guests attending the Laureus World Sports Awards Ceremony in Shanghai on April 15.

The Laureus World Sports Awards is the premier honours event on the international sporting calendar. The winners, as voted by the Laureus World Sports Academy, the ultimate sports jury, made up of 50 of the greatest sportsmen and sportswomen of all time, will be unveiled at the globally televised event staged at the world-famous Shanghai Grand Theatre.

Yao Ming is already a winner of a Laureus Award, having been presented with the Laureus Newcomer of the Year Award in 2003 in recognition of his impact on US basketball in the NBA. Sachin Tendulkar retired from cricket in 2013 after scoring a world record 15,921 runs for India in Test matches and 18,426 in One Day Internationals. He is the only man to score 100 centuries in international cricket.

Yao Ming and Sachin Tendulkar are the latest giants of sport to confirm they will be at the high profile event, which will be hosted by film and TV star Benedict Cumberbatch. Other leading sports stars coming to Shanghai are former NFL player Marcus Allen, South African rugby legends Schalk Burger and Jean de Villiers, plus Springboks coach Heyneke Meyer, West Indies cricketer Michael Holding, American skateboard sensation Nyjah Huston and British Paralympic star Sarah Storey.

The list of Laureus Academy Members, Ambassadors, Nominees and Guests so far confirmed for Shanghai reads like a sporting who’s who:

Valerie Adams, Marcus Allen, Annabelle Bond, Schalk Burger, Cafu, Eric Cantona, Fabio Capello, Nadia Comaneci, Mick Doohan, Emerson Fittipaldi, Sean Fitzpatrick, Dawn Fraser, Cathy Freeman, Shelley Gautier, Tanni Grey-Thompson, Ruud Gullit, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Mika Hakkinen, Michael Holding, Mike Horn, Nyjah Huston, Michael Johnson, Kip Keino, Franz Klammer, Janica Kostelic, Leung Yuk Wing, Li Xiaopeng, Vanesa Lorenzo, Tegla Loroupe, Danny MacAskill, Tina Maze, Heyneke Meyer, Edwin Moses, Robby Naish, Ilie Nastase, Alexey Nemov, Roman Petushkov, Morné du Plessis, Hugo Porta, Carles Puyol, Louis Saha, Mark Spitz, Sarah Storey, Sun Wen, Sachin Tendulkar, Pierre Vaultier, Jean de Villiers, Steve Waugh, Ireen Wüst, Yang Yang, Yao Ming


Proceeds from the Laureus World Sports Awards directly benefit and underpin the work of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, which supports more than 150 community sports projects in 34 countries, including China. Since its inception, Laureus has raised over €60 million for projects which have improved the lives of millions of young people.

The Awards Ceremony, attended by legends of sport past and present, celebrates the achievements of the greatest sportsmen and sportswomen of the year. The Host Partner of the 2015 Laureus World Sports Awards is Chinese textile and wool company HengYuanXiang Group (HYX), and the event will receive the strong support of the Shanghai Municipal Government.


The full list of Nominees for the 2015 Laureus World Sports Awards are:


Laureus World Sportsman of the Year

Novak Djokovic (Serbia) Tennis; Lewis Hamilton (UK) Motor Racing; Renaud Lavillenie (France) Athletics; Rory McIlroy (UK) Golf; Marc Márquez (Spain) Motor Cycling; Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) Football.


Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year

Valerie Adams (NZ) Athletics; Marit Bjørgen (Norway) Nordic Skiing; Genzebe Dibaba (Ethiopia) Athletics; Tina Maze (Slovenia) Alpine Skiing; Li Na (China) Tennis: Serena Williams (US) Tennis.


Laureus World Team of the Year

European Ryder Cup Team (Golf); Germany Men’s Football Team; Mercedes AMG Petronas Team (Germany); Real Madrid Football Team (Spain); San Antonio Spurs (US) Basketball; Switzerland Davis Cup Team (Tennis).


Laureus World Breakthrough of the Year Award

Marin Cilic (Croatia) Tennis; Mario Götze (Germany) Football; Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Motor Racing; James Rodriguez (Colombia) Football; Mikaela Shiffrin (US) Alpine Skiing; Switzerland Davis Cup Team (Tennis).


Laureus World Comeback of the Year Award

Francesco Acerbi (Italy) Football; Schalk Burger (South Africa) Rugby; Diego Milito (Argentina) Football; Jo Pavey (UK) Athletics; Pierre Vaultier (France) Snowboarding; Oliver Wilson (UK) Golf.


Laureus World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability

Shelley Gautier (Canada) Cycling; Tatyana McFadden (US) Wheelchair Racing; Roman Petushkov (Russia) Nordic Skiing; Anna Schaffelhuber (Germany) Alpine Skiing; Sarah Storey (UK) Cycling; Leung Yuk Wing (Hong Kong SAR China) Boccia.


Laureus World Action Sportsperson of the Year Award

Alan Eustace (US) Skydiving; Stephanie Gilmore (Australia) Surfing; Nyjah Huston (US) Skateboarding; Sage Kotsenburg (US) Snowboarding; Danny MacAskill (UK) Trials Cycling; Gabriel Medina (Brazil) Surfing.


Among the sporting greats who have previously been named as winners of Laureus Awards over the last 15 years have been Usain Bolt, Sebastian Coe, Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Alex Ferguson, Lewis Hamilton, Kelly Holmes, Yao Ming, Rafael Nadal, Pelé, Steve Redgrave, Ronaldo, Michael Schumacher, Kelly Slater, Shaun White, Serena Williams, Liu Xiang and Zinedine Zidane.

Guests who have attended previous Awards Ceremonies in the past have included David and Victoria Beckham, Morgan Freeman, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx, Jackie Chan, Thandie Newton, Clive Owen and Eva Longoria.

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