Tiger Woods, Novak Djokovic, Lindsey Vonn and the France national soccer team were among the winners at the Laureus World Sports Awards, with Woods claiming the Comeback Award 19 years after he was first recognized.
Woods, who won the inaugural World Sportsman of the Year award in 2000, won the Tour Championship in September for his 80th PGA Tour title and his first since August 2013.
Djokovic matched Usain Bolt's record by being named World Sportsman of the Year for the fourth time after winning Wimbledon and the U.S. Open. He also earned the honor in 2012, 2015 and 2016.
“A Laureus Award is what every athlete wants to win, and this one is a huge honour for me. Being among so many sporting greats here tonight… gives this award a special meaning for me,” WTA quoted Djokovic, as saying.
“Last year was an incredible season for me. Returning from injury to win Wimbledon and the US Open is something I’ll remember forever,” he added.
Vonn, who retired during the recent Alpine skiing world championships, took home the Spirit of Sport Award, which is given to an athlete for relentless dedication to his or her career, and France was honored for winning the World Cup in July.
Simone Biles was named World Sportswoman of the Year for winning four gold, one silver and one bronze medal at the gymnastics world championships. Naomi Osaka won the Breakthrough Award for winning the U.S. Open and Chloe Kim was named the World Action Sportsperson of the Year.
Biles has a record 14 career world titles under her name at the age of 21. She went ahead of winter sports stars Ester Ledecka and Mikaela Shiffrin, Grand Slam tennis champions Simona Halep and Angelique Kerber, and four-time ironman world champion Daniela Ryf in the vote.
FIFA World Cup winners France became the first national football team to win a second Laureus World Team of the Year Award. Their coach Didier Deschamps was on site to accept the award.
Japan's first Grand Slam tennis singles champion Naomi Osaka took the Laureus World Breakthrough of the Year Award. The 21-year-old is now number one in the world after recently winning the Australian Open.
Golfing star Tiger Woods received the Laureus World Comeback of the Year Award for winning the Tour Championship, his third Laureus Award after the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year accolade in 2000 and 2001.
Legendary football manager Arsene Wenger received the Laureus Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to football during his 22 years as manager of Arsenal.
(With AP Inputs)