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LONDON - A glittering collection of the world's greatest sports stars has been nominated for the 2007 Laureus World Sports Awards.
A record number of leading sports journalists from around the world have voted this year to select the nominees.
When the ballot closed on January 31, a total of 1068 members of the Laureus World Sports Awards media selection panel from 128 countries had cast their votes.
World tennis No 1 Roger Federer, seven-time Formula One world champion Michael Schumacher and the top golfer in the world, Tiger Woods - all two-time winners of the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year Award - have been nominated again, and there will be hot rivalry to see if one of them can be the first to make it three.
In a very competitive category, they are up against Fernando Alonso, the current Formula One world champion, Asafa Powell, the fastest man on Earth, and Fabio Cannavaro, captain of the Italian Fifa World Cup winning team.
In the sportswoman category, tennis star Amelie Mauresmo is competing with two other grand slam winners Justine Henin and Maria Sharapova.
At the nominations unveiling in Barcelona, it was also announced that French football legend and World Cup winner Marcel Desailly and South African explorer Mike Horn, winner of the Laureus Alternative Sportsperson of the Year Award in 2001, had been elected to the Laureus World Sports Academy.
Academy chairman Edwin Moses said: "This has been a great year for sport and the Academy is going to find it extremely difficult to decide who to vote for as winners." - Sapa