The Boston Red Sox baseball team’s victory in the World Series for the first time in 86 years was one of the most emotional sporting achievements of the year, and ended one of sport's most enduring ‘curses’.
From the day in 1920 when Boston Red Sox sold Babe Ruth to the New York Yankees, they had never won the World Series. Four times the Red Sox have reached the World Series and four times they have lost. But that all changed in 2004.
This time church bells rang in small New England towns and horns honked on the crowded streets of Boston as the Red Sox won the World Series in style, beating the St Louis Cardinals 4-0 in the best of seven matches.
On their way to the World Series, the Red Sox also engineered the greatest comeback in baseball history when they won four straight games against the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series.
To mark this extraordinary sporting achievement, Boston Red Sox were awarded the inaugural Laureus Spirit of Sport Award. To receive the Laureus Statuette from Laureus World Sports Academy Chairman Edwin Moses and England football captain David Beckham, were Red Sox vice-president Philip Morse, Chief Operating Officer Mike Dee and former legendary player Jim Rice, voted Most Valuable Player in 1978.
The Red Sox trio, who had flown from Boston to Lisbon specially to attend the Laureus Awards Ceremony, were delighted. Jim Rice said: “I’d like to thank Laureus for this wonderful award and of course it would tell you one thing - in 86 years anything can happen. This is a dream come true for the Boston Red Sox and the Red Sox fans.”
Philip Morse added: “This is an extraordinary evening, an extraordinary event and the accomplishments of the Red Sox, and the support of the fans, were just beyond belief. We will find a very special place in Fenway Park to display this wonderful trophy.” While Mike Dee said: “This truly is the spirit of sport and the spirit of the Red Sox. Millions of Red Sox fans back in the United States like to call themselves Red Sox Nation. Well, tonight here in Portugal, the Red Sox Nation has no boundaries.”