London, July 16: Former India captain Rahul Dravid has been elected the newest member of the Laureus World Sports Academy, a unique collection of the world's sportsmen and sportswomen.
Dravid is the 47th member of the Laureus Academy and he was in action straight away at a school in London's East End, where he joined fellow Academy Member Steve Waugh, meeting and playing cricket with young coaches who have been trained with support from the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, Laureus Academy said in a media statement today.
As he was photographed in front of the world's media at Christ Church C of E School in the Brick Lane area, he said: "It is a great privilege to be invited to join the Academy and I look forward to supporting the work of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation. I am truly honoured to be recognised alongside some of the greatest sportsmen and women we have ever seen. Sport has given me so much, and it is wonderful to now have the opportunity to make a difference in other people's lives."
Giving Dravid a warm welcome to the Laureus Family was Australia's greatest cricket captain Steve Waugh, who retired in January 2004 as the most successful captain in the history of Test cricket, with 41 wins in 57 Tests. He said: "On behalf of all the members of the Laureus World Sports Academy I would like to welcome Rahul. He achieved amazing success in an illustrious career. He was so pugnacious and determined when he was at the crease, he could have been an Aussie. He shares with all of us in the Academy the belief about how effective sport can be in tackling problems and bringing people together which is at the heart of the Laureus philosophy."
England cricket legend and Laureus World Sports Academy Member Sir Ian Botham was not able to be at the visit, but said: "Rahul had an incredible temperament and was a run-making machine. He was immovable and could stay there for hours. No wonder they called him ‘The Wall'. I am delighted that he will be joining us in the Laureus Academy. I look forward to welcoming him."
The members of the Laureus World Sports Academy, as well as voting for the winners each year of the Laureus World Sports Awards, support the work of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation which uses the power of sport to improve young people's lives. Since its inception, Laureus has raised more than €60 million for projects which have helped to improve the lives of millions of young people.