371 days ago, 2019 strolled in and served us some high-octane moments, though there were some setbacks along the ride, let’s take a look at some of the sporting moments that made the world go bonkers! From jaw-dropping comebacks to improbable victories – all in front of millions of fans around the world. Here’s a list of 10 notable sporting moments in 2019 that will linger in the hearts of many for a very long time.
Tiger Woods cements his legacy at the Masters
People counted Tiger Woods out before he won his fifth Masters title in April. Tagged as one of the greatest comebacks in sports history, Tiger Woods claimed his 15th major title, ending an 11-year drought since his last championship. This win finally linked his decades of experience on the golf course, and he showed exactly why he is considered the greatest golfer of all time. The Masters champion is now tied with legendary golfer Sam Snead, who won 82 titles throughout his more than 50-year career.
3 female athletes break records in one weekend
A trio of female athletes had an astounding and record-breaking weekend in October. Simone Biles won her 25th world championship medal, making her the most decorated gymnast of all time, male or female.
15-year-old Tennis star, Coco Gauff, won her first title in the WTA tournament, becoming the youngest winner since 2004.
Lastly, Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei broke a women’s world marathon record in her second-straight win at the Chicago Marathon.
Toronto Raptors become first non-American team to win the NBA Finals
With their fairy-tale win in six games, the Toronto Raptors became the first team based in Canada to win an NBA title in June. The Toronto Raptors had years of playoff disappointments. However, after opting to trade for superstar Kawhi Leonard and other pieces, the gamble paid off. Leonard led the Raptors to their first NBA championship after beating the Golden State Warriors. Their efforts didn’t go unnoticed by their home country, which rallied around the Raptors, proving once and for all, that Canadians do care about sports.
Djokovic defeats Federer in Wimbledon longest men’s singles final
In a stunning nearly five-hour match back in July, Novak Djokovic defeated Roger Federer in the Wimbledon men’s championship. Clocking in at four hours and 57 minutes, the match was the longest men’s singles final in Wimbledon history, and had it not been for a new rule that requires a tie-breaker if both players score 12-12 in the final set, it could have gone even longer.
It had everything – emotions, nerves, intensity, grit, and passion. For Federer, it was an opportunity missed, he had two championship points, but failed to take advantage. In the end, Djokovic deserved it, to claim his 5th Wimbledon title.
Allyson Felix smashes Usain Bolt’s record 10 months after giving birth
Allyson Felix came back from giving birth to her first child, Camryn, to become the most successful athlete in the history of the IAAF World Championships. Felix was part of the USA team that won the mixed-gender 4×400 meter relay. As such, she bagged her 12th medal, surpassing Usain Bolt for most IAAF World Championship medals.
Andy Ruiz Jr. stuns Anthony Joshua and the Boxing Universe
Anthony Joshua – the unified heavyweight champion of the world, a great boxer, and definitely a great creation of boxing’s mythmaking machine—looks like the perfect athlete.
In June, the Nigerian-British, walked into Madison Square Garden, his first fight outside of his native United Kingdom, with a 22-0 record, three of the four major belts, and perhaps the biggest profile in modern boxing to fight Andy Ruiz Jr., who had taken the fight on a month’s notice, after Jarrell Miller, Joshua’s initial opponent, failed three drug tests.
Joshua looked a touch slow in the early rounds, but by the third round, he appeared to be in control, dropping Ruiz with a left hook. Of course, that was not how the rest of the fight went. Ruiz stunned Joshua with flurries, knocked him down twice in the third, and then twice in the seventh before the fight was stopped.
However, in the rematch, Joshua jabbed his way to a unanimous decision and reclaimed his belts. The status quo is restored but still, the world won’t forget that Andy Ruiz Jr. was the heavyweight champ for 6 months.
Eliud Kipchoge breaks 2-hour Marathon Barrier
Back in October, Kenyan runner, Eliud Kipchoge crossed the finish line of the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in Vienna, Austria, with a time of one hour, 59 minutes, and 40.2 seconds. No athlete in history had ever managed to run a marathon in under two hours. While the time didn’t count as an official world record because of technicalities involving the race conditions, it’s a moment the running community won’t soon forget.
United States of America wins Women’s football World Cup
The US women’s soccer team has dominated the international scene for the last several years. Their win in this year’s World Cup marked a record fourth tournament title, more than any other nation in history. During the celebrations, the stadium erupted in chants of “equal pay,” a signal that fans hoped for yet another landmark victory in the team’s ongoing fight for gender equality in sports.
Liverpool & Tottenham overturn three-goal deficits to reach UCL Final
Another day, another unbelievable, three-goal comeback in the second leg of the UEFA Champions League semifinals. Tottenham Hotspur went from 1-0 down after the first leg against Ajax, to 3-0 down at halftime of the second leg, to level at 3-3 and through to the final on June 1 in Madrid on away goals.
In the same vein, Liverpool produced one of the greatest comebacks in Champions League history to beat Barcelona 4-0 on Tuesday, overturning a three-goal first-leg deficit and advancing to their second successive final with a 4-3 aggregate victory.
Liverpool went on to lift the trophy and now stand behind only Real Madrid and AC Milan as serial winners of this tournament.
Nike’s ‘Dream Crazy’ advert starring Colin Kaepernick wins Emmy
Nike’s embrace of a divisive social activist and former NFL quarterback saw it walk away with the award for outstanding commercial at the Creative Arts Emmys in September. It was the first time Nike had taken home the award since 2002.