Usain Bolt, Cristiano Ronaldo and Andy Murray headline the nominations for the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year awards. Voted for by members of the Laureus World Sports Academy, the winners will be declared in Monaco on Feb 14.
Nominees for the World Sportsman of the Year award also include 5k and 10k Olympic champion Mo Farah and basketball duo of Stephen Curry and LeBron James.
Swim ace Michael Phelps has been nominated for the Laureus World Comeback of the Year, having won another five gold medals and a silver medal at the Rio Olympics to become the most successful Olympian ever.
Spain's high jumper Ruth Beitia, Argentina's Davis Cup winner Juan Martin del Potro, British showjumper Nick Skelton, Mauritius triathlete Fabienne St Louis and Norwegian skier Aksel Lund Svindal were also nominated for the World Comeback of the Year.
Americans Simone Biles, Katie Ledecky and Allyson Felix, German world tennis No 1 Angelique Kerber, Jamaican sprint star Elaine Thompson and British cyclist Laura Kenny have been nominated for the Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year award.
F-1 racing team Mercedes AMG Petronas are nominated for the third straight year for the Laureus World Team of the Year Award along with three football teams – European champions Portugal, Champions League winners Real Madrid and Olympic gold medal winners Brazil.
Chicago Cubs, which won their first baseball World Series in 108 years, and NBA champions Cleveland Cavaliers are also shortlisted for the World Team of the Year award.
Nico Rosberg, who won the Formula One world championship last year, earned nomination for the Laureus World Breakthrough of the Year Award. Olympic world record breakers Almaz Ayana and Wayde van Niekerk will join him in the contest. Three teams who performed heroically in 2016 – English Premier League champions Leicester City, European championship quarter-finalists Iceland and Olympic Rugby Sevens gold medal winners Fiji – will also be in contention for the award.
Bale attempted 2.6 shots per game this SLL, while Benzema has attempted 2 shots.
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