Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
1 minute read
15 Jan 2020
5:38 pm

Springboks in line for Laureus award

Wesley Botton

The national rugby team has claimed the prestigious title before, ironically when they last won the World Cup in 2007.

World Cup champions, the Springboks, may end up facing hosts, France, in their pool at the 2023 World Cup. The draw is on Monday. Picture: SASPA

Recognised for their sterling victory at last year’s Rugby World Cup, the Springboks have been nominated for Team of the Year at the Laureus World Sports Awards.

The Boks, who previously received the prestigious accolade after winning the 2007 World Cup, were in line to lift the award for the second time after losing only one match during a superb 2019 season, with the national side also securing the Rugby Championship title.

They were up against five other nominees for Team of the Year, with performances considered throughout the 2019 campaign across all sports.

Other finalists included the United States women’s football team, who won last year’s Fifa Women’s World Cup; Liverpool Football Club, who lifted the Uefa Champions League title; formula one team Mercedes AMG Petronas, who won the drivers and constructors world championships; basketball side the Toronto Raptors, who became the first Canadian team to win the NBA Championship; and the Spanish men’s basketball squad, who won the FIBA World Cup.

Other categories to be recognised at the prestigious annual awards ceremony, to be held in Berlin on February 17, included Sportsman of the Year, Sportswoman of the Year, Breakthrough of the Year, Comeback of the Year, Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability, and Action Sportsperson of the Year.

Should the Boks be named Team of the Year, they would be the first South African representatives to win a Laureus award since former Springbok flank Schalk Burger received the Comeback of the Year accolade in 2015.

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