Missy Franklin in a file photo. She is nominated for the Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year. – AFP Photo
PETALING JAYA: Young American swimmer Missy Franklin will be at the glittering Laureus World Sports Awards at the Istana Budaya on Wednesday.
The California native has been unstoppable, winning four gold medals at the 2012 London Olympics, followed by an unprecedented six gold medals at one World Championships. She won the 100m and 200m backstroke, 200m freestyle, 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle and 4x100m medley at last year’s World Championships.
And all that at the age of 18. It is no wonder that she’s earned the nickname “Missile Missy”.
Franklin is nominated for the Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year for the first time this year. The other nominees are fellow American Serena Williams (tennis), German footballer Nadine Angerer, Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Russia’s Yelena Isinbayeva (both athletics), and Slovenia’s Tina Maze (skiing).
Among the past and present sporting greats who will be at the Laureus Awards are Michael Johnson, Nadia Comaneci, Mark Spitz, Daley Thompson, Dawn Fraser, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Dan Carter, Stephanie Gilmore and Sophie Pascoe. Malaysia will be represented by seven-time squash world champion and current world No. 1 Nicol David and badminton world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei.
British actor Benedict Cumberbatch of the BBC series Sherlock will host the ceremony, and Oscar and Grammy winner Jamie Foxx will perform to the star-studded audience. Others who have confirmed their attendance are German actor Daniel Brühl, who played Niki Lauda in the film Rush, and Chinese supermodel and actress Du Juan.