Indian skipper Virat Kohli along with former India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina, have found themselves on this year's list of ESPN World Fame 100 that made its debut last year. Kohli is placed 13th, while Dhoni is at the 15th place. Yuvraj and Raina are lower down the order and are placed at 90th and 95th respectively. The list is ESPN's ranking of the 100 most famous active athletes in the world. Leading the list is Real Madrid and Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo. Following Ronaldo are NBA great Lebron James, Barcelona and Argentina star Lionel Messi and tennis ace Roger Federer, in that order.
The others in the top ten are: Phil Mickelson, Neymar, Usain Bolt, Kevin Durant, Rafael Nadal and Tiger Woods.
The ranking is based on a formula devised by ESPN Director of Sports Analytics Ben Alamar, which combines endorsements, social media reach and other data to create a comparative ranking system.
In February, 28-year-old Kohli joined the likes of Bolt, Rickie Fowler and Thierry Henry as a Puma endorser and his eight-year deal with the shoe company is worth more than 100 crore rupees, the largest ever for an Indian athlete.
As part of the overall package ESPN The Magazine will dedicate an entire issue to World Fame 100, including features on some athletes, notably Yuvraj, and it's slated to hit newsstands in the US on June 2.
After beating a rare form of lung cancer, Yuvraj has given fans someone to look up to when things get tough. In 2015, he launched the YouWeCan foundation to fight cancer.
Among others to be featured likewise are swimming ace Ryan Lochte and Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton.
(With PTI inputs)