Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than government in breaking down racial barriers.
--Remarks at the Laureus World Sports Awards, 2010
Above: Mandela hands the Webb Ellis Cup to South Africa team captain Francois Pienaar after the team won the Rugby World Cup final on June 24, 1995. This moment, which inspired the Oscar-winning film Invictus, proved a seminal one in South African history. As John Carlin, who authored a book on the event, notes, it marked "the final submission of white South Africa to [Mandela's] charms." Carlin recounts the powerful moment, saying, "Ellis Park Stadium, 95 per cent white on the day, stood in dumb, disbelieving silence. Then someone took up a cry that others followed, ending in a thundering roar: 'Nel-son! Nel-son! Nel-son!'"