Berlin, April 19 (IANS) Tennis greats Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams were proclaimed as the premier athletes of 2015 at the Laureus World Sports Awards ceremony.
For the 28-year-old Serbian Djokovic, it was his second consecutive Sportsman of the Year prize and third overall, while Williams, 34, has been named Sportswoman of the Year on two previous occasions, reports Efe.
The Team of the Year trophy at the award ceremony held here on Monday went to New Zealand’s world-champion rugby squad whose captain Dan Carter picked up the award for Comeback of the Year.
American golfer Jordan Spieth, winner of the 2015 Masters and US Open, garnered the honour for Breakthrough of the Year.
Germany’s Jan Frodeno, a triathlete, received the award for Action Sportsman of the Year, and Brazilian swimmer Daniel Dias was recognised as outstanding sportsperson with a disability.
In his acceptance speech, Djokovic dedicated his prize to two other honourees: retired Formula 1 driver Niki Lauda, recipient of a lifetime achievement award; and late football legend Johan Cruyff, given a posthumous prize for his efforts on behalf of charity.
Hosting the gala was American actor Bill Murray, who appeared in full Bavarian costume – with lederhosen – at the start of the evening.
Most of the winners and presenters complemented their formal wear with athletic shoes in support of the Laureus campaign “Sneakers for Good,” which is meant to raise consciousness about the importance of participating in sports.