Tuesday, April 19, 2016 9:29 am
Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams completed a clean sweep for tennis as they won the Laureus Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year awards on Monday.
In a glitzy ceremony in the German capital, hosted by actor Bill Murray, Djokovic beat Barcelona footballer Lionel Messi, sprinter Usain Bolt and Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton among others for the top men’s award at the annual ceremony.
Djokovic and Williams, who fought off competition from footballer Carli Lloyd and Jamaican sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce among others, were rewarded for dominating their sport last year, with each winning three of the four grand slams.
In his acceptance speech, Djokovic dedicated the award to the Dutch legend Johan Cruyff, who passed away in March, and the former Formula One driver Niki Lauda, who were also both honored during the ceremony.
Lauda received a lifetime achievement award and Cruyff was honored for his charity work. His son Jordi accepted the award.
‘He had a great year again,’ said Boris Becker, who is Djokovic’s coach.
‘He’s played 88 matches, has won 82, He won three out of the four Grand Slams, reached the final of the French Open, he’s won seven other tournaments. Very few players, if any, had a year like that.’
Both athletes picked up the top prize for the third time, with Williams having previously won it in 2003 and 2010 while Djokovic was also victorious in 2012 and 2015.
Laureus World Sportsman of the Year: Novak Djokovic
Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year: Serena Williams
Laureus World Team of the Year: All Blacks
Laureus World Breakthrough of the Year: Jordan Spieth
Laureus World Comeback of the Year: Dan Carter
Laureus World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability: Daniel Dias
Laureus World Action Sportsperson of the Year: Jan Frodeno
Golfer Jordan Spieth won the Breakthrough of the Year award after capturing his first two majors at the 2015 Masters and US Open.
Reported by Mail Online