Kenyan marathoner Eliud Kipchoge and South Africa’s national men’s rugby team were named as nominees in different categories for the upcoming Laureus awards.
Kipchoge, the marathon world record holder, was nominated in the Sportsman of the Year category while 2019 Rugby World Cup winners the Springboks were nominated in the Team of the Year.
Kipchoge became the first person ever to run a marathon in under two hours after he completed the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in 1 hour 59 minutes 40 seconds in Vienna, Austria, last October.
He also won a fourth London Marathon in 2 hours 2 minutes 37 seconds breaking the course record and setting the then second fastest marathon time.
Kipchoge has claimed several high-profile awards in the past year, including BBC Sports Personality World Sport Star of the Year and both the World Athletics Athlete and Male Athlete of the Year awards.
Kipchoge will battle for the title alongside American golfer Tiger Woods, Argentine footballer Lionel Messi, British Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton, Spanish MotoGP rider Marc Marquez and Spanish tennis player Rafael Nadal.
The Springboks won a third Rugby World Cup becoming the first team to do so after losing a match. They also became the first team to win the Rugby Championship and World Cup in the same year.
The Boks played 12 games winning 10 of them and drawing and losing one each, both against former World champions New Zealand. The team also became the number one ranked in the world having last held that position in November 2009.
The other nominees in the Team of the Year category are UEFA Champions League winners Liverpool, Formula 1 team Mercedes-AMG Petronas, NBA champions Toronto Raptors, the United States Women’s football team and Spain’s men’s basketball team.
The 2020 Laureus Awards ceremony will take place in Berlin, Germany, on February 17.