Lincoln Tan is the New Zealand Herald’s diversity, ethnic affairs and immigration senior reporter.

Sony World Photography Awards 2017: Winners

A shot of women playing rugby underwater has been named among the world's best photographs in a prestigious global photo contest.

The photo by Colombian-born Camilo Diaz, which showed the Colombian national underwater rugby team fighting together for the ultimate position, was named the best "motion" shot in the 2017 Sony World Photography Awards' Open competition.

The competition saw more than 105,000 entries, and 10 were named as category winners.

German photographer Ralph Graf's shot taken during a stopover at the gas station along Route 66 landed him the best travel photo award, and Swiss photographer Alessandra Maniconzi's image of a flock of flamingos in shallow waters of Walvis Bay, on the Namibian coast last summer, was named best wildlife photo.

An expert panel of judges picked the best single image across 10 categories: architecture, culture, enhanced, motion, nature, portraits, still life, street photography, travel and wildlife.

The awards, dubbed the world's largest photography competition, received more than 227,000 images from photographers from 183 countries this year - including more than 105,000 in the Open competition.

Chair of the Open competition, journalist and photographer Damien Demolder, said: "It has been a pleasure and an inspiration to be exposed to such a volume of great work, a privilege, too, that I could share in the personal moments, the joys, tears, life and losses of photographers from all around the globe."

Best photographs taken by local photographers from 66 countries were also selected and awarded the National Awards.

Now into its fourth year, the National Awards was opened up to photographers from Cambodia, Nepal, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates for the first time this year.

The awards comprised four competitions - Open, Professional, Youth and Student Focus.

All winning pictures will be exhibited at Somerset House, London from April 21 to May 7, 2017.

- Herald on Sunday

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