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Emma Raducanu honoured for breakthrough year at Laureus World Sports Awards

British tennis star Emma Raducanu has won the Breakthrough of the Year award at the 2022 Laureus World Sports Awards, while teenage skateboard Olympic medallist Sky Brown received the Comeback of the Year award.

Last September, Raducanu, now 19, came through qualifying to win the US Open in New York, becoming the first British woman to lift a Grand Slam title since Virginia Wade at Wimbledon in 1977.

After receiving her prestigious Laureus award at a digital ceremony hosted from Seville, Raducanu said: “It has been a great year for me.

“Thank you to all the Laureus Academy Members for voting for me. I really want to congratulate all the other nominees too.”

Sky Brown with her Laureus comeback of the year award (Laureus/PA handout)

Brown, meanwhile, was also honoured after recovering from serious injury to go on and claim a bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics.

The teenager had suffered multiple skull fractures in a training fall in May 2020, but fought her way back to compete for at the Games and become Britain’s youngest Olympic medallist.

Britain’s Bethany Shriever received the World Action Sports Award, after becoming the first woman to win gold at both the BMX World Championships and the Olympics.

Elsewhere, Formula One world champion Max Verstappen and Jamaican sprinter Elaine Thompson-Herah were named the Laureus World Sportsman and World Sportswoman of the Year.

Italy’s men’s football side were voted Team of the Year following their triumph over England in the European Championship final.

The Laureus World Sports Academy also made special presentations.

Seven-time Super Bowl winner Tom Brady was honoured with the Laureus Lifetime Achievement Award, while Poland’s Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski received the Exceptional Achievement Award, having broken Gerd Muller’s long-standing Bundesliga scoring record.

Motor cycle racer Valentino Rossi was presented with the Laureus Sporting Icon Award, after retiring last November at the end of a 25-year career.