Kuala Lumpur: The bustling city awaited in anticipation and the air was buzzing with excitement as the cr?me de la cr?me of the sporting world started to touch down in batches for the 15th Laureus International Sports Awards to be held here on Wednesday and attended by, among others, Indian cricket legend Kapil Dev.
Adding to the buzz is the Malaysian Grand Prix, to be held over the weekend and which will coincide with the Eurasia Cup, making it a carnival like atmosphere.
One of the brand ambassadors for what is the equivalent of Oscars in sports, the 55-year-old Indian World Cup winning captain has confirmed his participation alongside a plethora of legends such as Sebastian Coe, Johan Cruyff and Bobby Charlton - names that need no introduction in their respective sports.
Laureus Sport For Good Foundation, whose mission is to use sport as the means to combat some of the world`s toughest social challenges faced by young people today and which organises the event annually, is also set to grace 2013`s top performers like Sebastian Vettel, Christiano Ronaldo, Usain Bolt, Serena Williams and Yelena Isinbayeva to name a few.
American teenager Missy Franklin, the first woman swimmer in history to win six gold medals at a single World Championships, at the age of just 18, is the latest global sports star to confirm attendance for the premier event.
The winners, after being voted by the Laureus World
Sports Academy, made up of 46 of the greatest sportsmen and sportswomen of all time, will be unveiled at a globally televised ceremony.
Proceeds from the Laureus World Sports Awards directly benefit and underpin the work of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, which supports more than 140 community sports projects in 34 countries.
Chairman of Laureus World Sports Academy, Edwin Moses said: "We are not just in Malaysia for the Laureus Awards. We hope our activities will make a difference."
A glittering collection of football stars will be playing here tomorrow in the first ever Laureus All Stars Unity Cup as part of the 2014 awards.
The two managers - Fabio Capello and Michael Laudrup ? have already finalised their line-ups for the match, which will take place at the Royal Selangor Club.
The All Stars Unity Cup will feature some of the most celebrated football names in the world.