The International Olympic Committee (IOC) introduced the award to honour the people who made significant changes in education, culture, development and peace through sports.

The IOC is taking the social dimension of sports very seriously, prof Yunus shared on his verified Facebook page on Friday. "You, athletes of the world, can provide the leadership in transforming this world," he added.

Prof Yunus called for creating a world of three zeros - zero net carbon emission, zero wealth concentration to end poverty and once for all, zero unemployment by unleashing the power of entrepreneurship in everyone.

He wished the IOC success with its mission to help transform this world to a more peaceful world through sport. "I wish all of you best of luck for your competitions," he said, thanking all for this award. "That's so special to me. Thank you."