Rafa Nadal, Ansu Fati, Joan Mir and the Argentine rugby team (the ‘Pumas’) are among the definitive candidates for the Laureus 2021 Awards, which in this year’s edition will be announced in May and delivered virtually, without the usual gala, due to the covid-19 pandemic.
Nadal He is one of the six definitive candidates for best athlete of the year, an award he already received in 2011, an edition in which the award for the best team went to the Spanish soccer team after being proclaimed world champion in South Africa 2010.
Therefore, the Balearic tennis player aspires to relieve Argentine Leo Messi and Briton Lewis Hamilton, as both were declared winners. The Formula One world champion is again included among the candidates along with the Ugandan athlete Joshua Cheptegei, the Swedish supporter Armand Duplantis, the Polish striker of Bayern Munich, Robert Lewandowski, and the figure of the NBA Lebron James of the Los Angeles Lakers.
The candidates to replace the American gymnast Simon Biles are the Dutch cyclist Anna van der Breggen, the Italian skier Federica Brignone, the Kenyan athlete Brigid Kosgei, the Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka (best revelation in 2019), the French soccer player Wendie Renard and the American basketball player Breanna Stewart.
In the best team chapter, South African Springboks will be relieved for the Argentine national team rugby, Bayern Munich (Soccer), Kansas City Chiefs (American Football), Liverpool (Soccer), Los Angeles Lakers (basketball) or Mercedes Petronas (Formula One), definitive candidates.
The young Spanish international Ansu Fati, Barcelona forward, will compete in the revelation section with the MotoGP world champion, also Spanish Joan Mir (Suzuki), as well as other world sports figures such as the American Patrick Mahomes (American football), the Slovenian Tadej Pogacar (Cycling), the Polish Iga Swiatek (Tennis) and the Austrian Dominic Thiem (Tennis).
For the first time, three Sport for Development programs have been shortlisted alongside Laureus Award nominees, an unequivocal sign of the important contribution of grassroots sports organizations throughout the covid-19 pandemic.
The candidates are: Boxgirls Kenya, a program that uses boxing to empower at-risk girls from Nairobi’s slums; the Colombianitos Foundation, a Colombian organization that uses soccer and rugby to promote education and reduce gender differences; and Kickformore, a soccer organization that encourages participants to make positive contributions to their communities in Germany.
Sean Fitzpatrick, president of the Laureus Academy, said that “after a difficult year” they are “more determined than ever to guarantee” this partnership “honor the men and women who worked hard to get back into sport, in many cases in a very different environment and without spectators. They have given everyone an emotional boost at a difficult time. ”
“As members of the Academy, we are also proud to see all three Sport for Good Award programs shortlisted among these top-performing athletes. Working under often difficult circumstances in underprivileged communities around the world, these programs show their best. of sport, and all of them have done very well to continue using sport as a tool for social change in the face of adversity, “he said.
Candidates for best male athlete
Joshua Cheptegei (UGA / Athletics), Armand Duplantis (SWE / Athletics), Lewis hamilton (GBR / Formula One), Lebron James (USA / Basketball), Robert Lewandowski (POL / Football) and Rafael Nadal (ESP / Tennis).
Candidates for best female athlete
Anna van der Breggen (NED / Cycling), Federica Brignone (ITA / Alpine Skiing), Brigid Kosgei (KEN / Athletics), Naomi Osaka (JPN / Tennis), Wendie Renard (FRA / Football), Breanna Stewart (USA / Basketball)
Candidates for best team
Argentine rugby team, Bayern Munich (football), Kansas City Chiefs (American football), Liverpool (Football), Los Angeles Lakers (basketball), Mercedes Petronas (Formula One)
Candidates for revelation
Ansu Fati (ESP / Football), Patrick Mahomes (USA / American Football), Joan Mir (ESP / Motorcycling), Tadej Pogacar (SLO / Cycling), Iga Swiatek (POL / Tennis) and Dominic Thiem (AUT / Tennis)
Candidates for the best comeback
Daniel Bard (USA / Baseball), Kento Momota (JPN / Badminton), Alex Morgan (USA / Football), Max Parrot (CAN / Snowboard), Mikaela Shiffrin (USA / Alpine Skiing) and Alex Smith (USA / American Football)
Candidates for the ‘Sport for Good’ award
Boxgirls Kenya, Kickformore (Germany) and Fundación Colombianitos.