United States women’s national team forward Abby Wambach is one of four sports figures named to Time Magazine’s annual list of 100 most influential people in the world.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver, ballerina Misty Copeland and surfer Gabriel Medina also made the list.
Wambach was named to the list in this Women’s World Cup year not just for her on-field accomplishments, but her willingness to fight for equality off the field. As her former teammate and U.S. legend Mia Hamm put it to Time:
“There are times when Abby just throws the team on her back and wills it to victory when that looks almost impossible. Abby is also a great role model for young fans and recently led the charge to get FIFA to use grass for this summer’s Women’s World Cup, as it does for men. Though she lost the battle, the fight sent a powerful message about equality in sports.”
[MORE: No surprises on United States’ Women’s World Cup roster]
Wambach says that her tribulations and failures have taught her more than anything in life:
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