10 Athletes that comes to fore in popular sporting events

Athletes, sport stars are persons who, trained or skilled in exercises, sports, or games requiring physical strength, agility, or stamina.

Although, this makes some sporting events like golf, snooker, etc., controversial in nature. But that’s another topic for other times.

These athletes are people we envisioned as superman because they have imprint their foots in the sands of time.

Well, for some it’s the strict rules of life which are patience, perseverance, determination, hard work, etc., which makes them solidify their places on planet earth.

For some others, it all started as that which they derive joy, fun, play time but found a way to grow within them as inbuilt talents, skills, abilities which they enjoy doing time to time.

Hence, these brings us to this edition of sports ranking where we have names of some athletes that comes to mind when mentioning a sporting event.

However, it is important to note that these rankings are simple opinions of the author and does not in anyway represent the official ranking.

10. MotorGP

Italian Valentino Rossi is one of three riders to have won a Championship title across all three classes.

He won the 125cc class Championship in 1997 and the 250cc class Championship in 1999.

Rossi won the MotoGP Championship on 5 consecutive occasions between 2001-2005 inclusive.

The Italian has won a total of 7 Riders’ Championship titles only behind fellow Italian Giacomo Agostini in the all-time list.

He is the only rider to have aggregated more than 5000 Championship points.

Valentino Rossi has stood on the podium a record 196 times including on 23 consecutive races between 2003 and 2004.

‘The Doctor’ #46 Rossi has won a total of 89 Grand Prix races.

9. Table Tennis

Ma Long is a three-time Olympic gold medalist, the reigning men’s singles Olympic Champion.

He is one of the best players the table tennis world has ever seen.

The Chinese has held the ranking of number 1 for a total of 64 months (and 34 consecutive months from March 2015), the most by any male player in the history of table tennis.

He won a record 5 straight ITTF World Tour tournaments in a row, including a streak of 35 sets, and a record total of 28 ITTF World Tour titles.

The 32-year-old, who could become the greatest table tennis Olympian ever at the Tokyo Games in 2021, is a global superstar of the sport.

But, away from the limelight as he prefers to keep a low profile.

8. Golf

As a nine year-old, Tiger made a bold commitment to his father, Earl: I’m going to be professionally excellent.

Tiger Woods, byname of Eldrick Woods, American golfer who enjoyed one of the greatest amateur careers in the history of the game.

Since turning professional in 1996, Tiger has built an unprecedented competitive career.

His achievements on the course–106 worldwide wins and 15 majors–have mirrored his success off the course as well.

Woods serves as Founder and CEO of TGR, a multibrand enterprise comprised of his various companies and philanthropic endeavors, including TGR Design, the golf course design company; The TGR Foundation, a charitable foundation; TGR Live, an events production company; and The Woods Jupiter, an upscale sports restaurant.

He has 82 PGA TOUR wins, tied with Sam Snead, holding the record for most wins in history.

His majors victories include the five Masters Tournaments, four PGA Championships, three U.S. Open Championships, and three British Open Championships.

With his second Masters victory in 2001, Tiger became the first golfer ever to hold all four professional major championships— the Masters, the U.S. Open, the British Open (Open Championship), and the PGA Championship at the same time.

Woods became the dominant player on the professional circuit in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

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He is the career victories leader among active players on the PGA TOUR, and is the career money list leader.

7. Boxing

Muhammad Ali was an American former heavyweight champion boxer.

He is one of the greatest sporting figures of the 20th century.

An Olympic gold medalist and the first fighter to capture the heavyweight title three times, Ali won 56 times in his 21-year professional career.

Ali’s outspokenness on issues of race, religion and politics made him a controversial figure during his career, and the heavyweight’s quips and taunts were as quick as his fists.

Born Cassius Clay Jr., Ali changed his name in 1964 after joining the Nation of Islam.

Citing his religious beliefs, he refused military induction for Vietnam War and was stripped of his heavyweight championship and banned from boxing for three years during the prime of his career.

Convicted of draft evasion, Ali was sentenced to the maximum of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine, but he remained free while the conviction was appealed.

Many saw Ali as a draft dodger, and his popularity plummeted.

Banned from boxing for three years, Ali spoke out against the Vietnam War on college campuses.

As public attitudes turned against the war, support for Ali grew.

In 1970 the New York State Supreme Court ordered his boxing license reinstated, and the following year the U.S. Supreme Court overturned his conviction in a unanimous decision.

After 43 months in exile, Ali returned to the ring on October 26, 1970, and knocked out Jerry Quarry (1945-1999) in the third round.

The 39-year-old Ali retired for good with a career record of 56 wins, five losses and 37 knockouts.

Parkinson’s syndrome severely impaired Ali’s motor skills and speech, which led to his demise.

But he remained active as a humanitarian and goodwill ambassador while he was alive.

https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/muhammad-ali

6. Formula 1

Michael Schumacher, byname Schumi, German race-car driver who set records for the most Formula One (F1) Grand Prix race victories (91, later broken by Lewis Hamilton) and F1 series championships (seven, later tied by Hamilton).

In 1984 and 1985 he won the German junior karting championship, and in 1987 he captured the German and European karting titles.

The next year, at age 19, he left karting and became a driver of Formula Three (F3) cars, vehicles that were less powerful than the F1 racers.

Two years later, in 1990, he won the German F3 championship.

In 1991 Schumacher moved up to F1 competition as a driver for the Jordan team.

He switched to Benetton the following year and won the drivers’ world championship for that team in 1994 and 1995.

Before the 1996 season he moved to the Ferrari team and finished third in the championship standings.

After suffering a broken leg in a crash in 1999, Schumacher rebounded to win a third championship the following year, which was Ferrari’s first drivers’ title since 1979.

His 2000 win was the first in a string of five consecutive world championships (2000–04), and his grand total of seven F1 titles broke Juan Manuel Fangio’s record of five that had stood for nearly 50 years.

In 2005 and 2006 he finished in third and second place in the F1 standings, respectively.

Schumacher retired at the end of the 2006 campaign to serve as a test driver and adviser for Ferrari.

At the time of his retirement, he had 91 F1 Grand Prix race victories, which shattered the previous record of 51, held by French driver Alain Prost.

In December 2009 Schumacher announced that he would return to F1 for the 2010 season as a driver for the Mercedes team.

While Schumacher experienced unprecedented success on the track, he was also through a combination of winner’s purses and endorsements.

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Schumacher was also known for his charitable efforts and was named special ambassador for UNESCO in 2002.

In December 2013 Schumacher fell while skiing in France and hit his head on a rock.

Despite his wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, he sustained a significant brain injury and was placed in a medically induced coma until the following June.

5. Athletics

For this, we have two amazing and extraordinary personalities who redefined two of the most popular sports in Olympic.

Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt are the two amazing personalities. As Phelps is to swimming, Bolt is to Track events.

Want to know more about these two great athletes, click on this link.

4. Tennis

Roger Federer is a Switzerland professional tennis player and ranked No. 8 in the world by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP).

He has won 20 Grand Slam men’s singles titles, an all-time record shared with Rafael Nadal.

Federer has been world No. 1 in the ATP rankings a total of 310 weeks – including a record 237 consecutive weeks – and has finished as the year-end No. 1 five times.

Federer has won 103 ATP singles titles, the second-most of all-time behind Jimmy Connors and including a record six ATP Finals.

The Swiss international has played in an era where he dominated men’s tennis together with Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. 

A Wimbledon junior champion in 1998, Federer won his first Grand Slam singles title at Wimbledon in 2003 at age 21.

In 2004, he established himself as the best player in men’s tennis by winning three out of four major singles titles and the ATP Finals, a feat he repeated in 2006 and 2007.

From 2005 to 2010, Federer made 18 out of 19 major singles finals.

During this span, he won his fifth consecutive titles at both Wimbledon and the US Open.

He completed the career Grand Slam at the 2009 French Open after three previous runner-ups to Nadal, his main rival up until 2010.

At age 27, he also surpassed Pete Sampras’s then-record of 14 Grand Slam men’s singles titles at Wimbledon in 2009.

From mid-2010 through the end of 2016, he only won one major title.

During this period, Federer and Stan Wawrinka led the Switzerland Davis Cup team to their first title in 2014, adding to the gold medal they won together in doubles at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

He won three more Grand Slam singles titles over the next two years, including the 2017 Australian Open over Nadal and a men’s singles record eighth Wimbledon title in 2017 later that year.

He also became the oldest ATP world No. 1 in 2018 at age 36. 

3. Basketball

Michael Jeffrey Jordan also known by his initials MJ, is an American businessman and former professional basketball player.

He is the principal owner and chairman of the Charlotte Hornets of the National Basketball Association (NBA) and of 23XI Racing in the NASCAR Cup Series.

He played 15 seasons in the NBA, winning six championships with the Chicago Bulls. His biography on the official NBA website states: “By acclamation, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time.”

He was integral in helping to popularize the NBA around the world in the 1980s and 1990s, becoming a global cultural icon in the process.

Jordan won his first NBA championship with the Bulls in 1991, and followed that achievement with titles in 1992 and 1993, securing a “three-peat”.

Jordan abruptly retired from basketball before the 1993–94 NBA season to play Minor League Baseball.

But returned to the Bulls in March 1995 and led them to three more championships in 1996, 1997, and 1998, as well as a then-record 72 regular season wins in the 1995–96 NBA season.

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He retired for a second time in January 1999 but returned for two more NBA seasons from 2001 to 2003 as a member of the Washington Wizards.

He holds the NBA records for career regular season scoring average (30.12 points per game) and career playoff scoring average (33.45 points per game).

2. Cricket

Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar is an Indian former international cricketer who served as captain of the Indian national team.

He is widely regarded as one of the greatest batsmen in the history of cricket.

He is the highest run scorer of all time in international cricket, and the only player to have scored one hundred international centuries, the first batsman to score a double century in a One Day International (ODI).

The holder of the record for the most runs in both Test and ODI cricket, and the only player to complete more than 30,000 runs in international cricket.

In 2013, he was the only Indian cricketer included in an all-time Test World XI named to mark the 150th anniversary of Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack.

He is affectionately known as Little Master or Master Blaster.

Tendulkar’s considerable achievements seem greater still when looked at in the light of the burden of expectations.

He had to bear that, from his adoring but somewhat unreasonable followers, who have been prone to regard anything less than a hundred in each innings as a failure.

The aura may have dimmed, if only slightly, as the years on the international circuit took their toll on the body, but Tendulkar remains, by a distance, the most worshipped cricketer in the world.

1. Football

The most anticipated name for the most popular and arguably most watched sporting event comes to fire.

For the fans out there, different names comes to mind due to aspirations, feeling they have towards player.

Hence, we will try to make the best out of it.

For some of the older generations, Pele is the man. When it comes to the millennials it is Diego Maradona. But, when asked from the generation “Z” either Messi or Ronaldo.

Therefore, what player name comes to mind directly when football is mentioned?

This is difficult to decide but we will give it to the Late Diego Armando Maradona.

This is not to say Maradona is the greatest player in the world of football but as said earlier player name that comes to mind when football is mentioned.

Diego Armando Maradona  was an Argentine professional footballer and manager.

Widely regarded as one of the greatest players in the history of the sport, he was one of the two joint winners of the FIFA Player of the 20th Century award.

Maradona’s vision, passing, ball control, and dribbling skills were combined with his small stature, which gave him a low centre of gravity allowing him to manoeuvre better than most other players.

His presence and leadership on the field had a great effect on his team’s general performance, while he would often be singled out by the opposition.

In addition to his creative abilities, he possessed an eye for goal and was known to be a free kick specialist.

A precocious talent, Maradona was given the nickname “El Pibe de Oro” (“The Golden Boy”), a name that stuck with him throughout his career.

He also had a troubled off-field life and was banned in both 1991 and 1994 for abusing drugs.

On 25 November 2020, at the age of 60, Maradona suffered a heart attack and died at his home in Dique Luján, Buenos Aires Province, Argentina.

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