Sam Parker’s Winners Of 2012

Posted: January 10, 2013 in Athletics, Cycling, Football, Tennis
Tags: , , , , , ,
Wiggins was the outstanding sporting star of 2012

Wiggins was the outstanding sporting star of 2012

2012 was a massive year for sport, with the Olympics taking centre stage in a year saturated with huge sporting events.

Here I pick the highlights of 2012 and the people who will look back on it with a heavy sense of pride, as they enjoyed some wonderful successes.

BRADLEY WIGGINS

No surprises here for the sporting man of the year, not only in Britain, but potentially the world.

Wiggins made the leap to become the first Briton to ever win the Tour De France, with a Herculean effort needed to become victor without the aid of performance enhancing drugs (more on that in the losers section).

To then top it off, Wiggins had a two week rest before leaping back on his bike to win gold in the Olympic Games, Great Britain’s first of an incredibly successful summer.

His reaction to being persistently quizzed by journalists about whether he was using drugs at all saw him throw a table across the room, (which is quite frankly brilliant) and he won BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year, as well as a Knighthood.  

A very good year for a likeable man. Just a shame he’s referred to in tabloids as “the sideburns ace.” Sigh.

JESSICA ENNIS

The pressure was on really on Britain’s golden girl and quite frankly it would have been only too easy to hide away or choke on the expectation that followed her around all year.

But instead she rose to the occasion and absolutely destroyed a strong field to take home her first ever Olympic Gold and fulfil a life-long dream.

There has been no sense of arrogance from the Sheffield heptathlon star who has taken the success and fame in her stride to really become a national treasure.

Who hasn't done 'The Mobot' yet?

Who hasn’t done ‘The Mobot’ yet?

MO FARAH

Followed up his World Championship success by claiming double gold at his home Olympics in some style.

His performances in the 5,000m and 10,000m races established him as the number one long-distance runner in the world right now finally wrestling that title away from the continent of Africa, with these races traditionally dominated by Athletes from Kenya and Ethiopia.

On top of that, he got an entire nation pulling a stupid pose, as millions of photos appeared on social media sites of people doing the Mobot. Given this includes Usain Bolt, that’s a reason to be proud of yourself.

LIONEL MESSI

It was generally a bad year for football, but there’s no way the Argentinean forward will look back on 2012 with anything but pride.

He’s almost become a problem for sports-writers, who are constantly trying to come up with new superlatives to describe a player who will most likely be looked upon as the best player ever come the climax of his career.

Messi won his fourth consecutive FIFA Ballon D’Or in recognition of a year in which he broke a 40-year-old record for goals in a calendar year, scoring an incredible 92 goals for Barcelona and Argentina.

For the man to stay so humble in a game populated by egos despite his incredible ability is almost staggering, but he will surely talk about 2012 for years to come.

ANDY MURRAY

After so many near misses and almost theres, Andy Murray finally broke his major tournament duck by defeating Novak Djokovic to win the US Open in New York.

I’ve been an outspoken critic of the Scot on many an occasion and won’t hide behind any hypocrisy here, but it was an incredible achievement in a fantastic match against a player currently at the top of his game.

This came just a few weeks after Murray had claimed Olympic gold as well, thwarting Roger Federer from claiming the only title he has yet to win in a glittering career.

In addition to this, his surly attitude and penchant for petty excuses seems to be giving way for a more approachable and enthusiastic competitor, who will look to build upon this successful year in 2013.

THE PARALYMPICS

Such a terrific year for sport leaves us with only so much room to cover the successes and despite several athletes and individual Paralympians, the event as a whole deserves recognition for the boost in publicity it has received.

Never before has the Paralympics been so popular, so widely watched and so well supported than in London 2012. So often it has been an after-thought to the ‘main event’, forgotten about in the aftermath of emotionally draining Olympic Games.

But not this year, not in London, as people swarmed to take in the Paralympics just as much as the more able-bodied athletes.

It helped shatter some of the poorer attitudes to the disabled, as athletes with physical and mental disabilities proved themselves worthy of adulation, exceeding the accomplishments of most other people in the nation.

Hopefully this doesn’t prove just a false dawn and the Paralympic Games can continue to receive the recognition and adulation it has finally been given. It also brought Adam Hills to our screens on a regular basis, which must happen more often.

Who were your sporting winners of 2012? Comment below or directly @SmParker8 on Twitter

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