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Top 15 Sporting Moments of 2022

George Priestman

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Top 15 Sporting Moments of 2022

Well, that's it. Another year draws to a close, but before we move into 2023, we can look back on a year of sport that has been like no other.

With so many moments to choose from, SPORTbible have collated our top 15 moments, but there's also plenty of achievements that could have made this list.

15. Stone Cold Steve Austin Returns

Wrestlers always come out of retirement but for 19 years Stone Cold was the one man who seemed to completely buck the trend.

At WrestleMania 38 he returned as part of a segment, it soon turned into his first fight in nearly two decades as him and Kevin Owens tore the house down.

He came back for night two to deliver his patented Stone Cold Stunner to Vince McMahon. Arrived, Raised Hell, Left!

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14. Gerwyn Price Hits Two Nine-Dart Finishes in One Night

In February, world number one Price hit two nine-Dart finishes in one night, in a brilliant night of Premier League action took place in Belfast, back in February.

Price hit his first finish against Michael van Gerwen before hitting his second in the final against James Wade.

There's only been 71 nine darters in the history of the sport and before the Welshman's feat there'd never been two in the same night. It happened again at the UK Open in March, but this time it was two different players.

13.. Serena Williams Retires

Very few athletes leave the kind of impact behind them that Williams will and she finally hung up her racket after an emotional end to her US Open.

She had said before the tournament it would be her last and, after losing in the first round of Wimbledon, there wasn't too much hope the 41-year-old would go far.

However, she made it to the third round, beating second seed Anett Kontaveit on the way, before eventually losing to Ajla Tomljanovic.

Williams bows out. Image: Alamy
Williams bows out. Image: Alamy

12. Matt Fitzpatrick wins the US Open

Matt Fitzpatrick became only the second Englishman since 1970 to triumph at the US Open earlier this year, claiming his maiden major title after edging Will Zalatoris by a single stroke.

The victory was no doubt indebted to the incredible shot he played on the 72nd hole that maintain his one-stroke lead in what was a moment of brilliance that led to his historic achievement.

11. Ireland win in New Zealand for the first time

Ireland continued to hold the wood over New Zealand by winning twice on tour, and becoming just the sixth team to win a tour in the country.

Andy Farrell's men lost the first Test 42-19 but came back in roaring fashion to defeat the All Blacks 23-12 and 32-22.

They didn't lose another game all year and finished 2022 as the top ranked team in the world, if they continue their form then 2023 could see them finally win the World Cup.

10. Rafael Nadal Wins His 21st Grand Slam

After all the drama of Novak Djokovic not being allowed into the country, Nadal shocked everyone by becoming the first man to win 21 grand slam titles.

He'd been injured in the build up to the Australian Open but came through to face Daniil Medvedev in the final.

The then 35-year-old battled back from two sets down to shock the world and win the title he hadn't held since 2009. He went on to win a 22nd slam in France later in the year.

9. England's Test Cricket Revival

Who said Test Cricket was dead? The appointment of former New Zealand batter Brendon McCullum has seen England completely rip up the rulebook when it comes to how teams should play test cricket, and the country's revival has been incredible.

Their turnaround from a dismal Ashes series in Australia last winter to becoming the in-form side in the sport across all three disciplines has been extraordinary.

The whitewash victory in Pakistan was probably the highlight, especially the way Ben Stokes declared in the first Test, leaving the hosts with a winnable position. Bring on next summer's Ashes!

An incredible year for Stokes and his team. Image: Alamy
An incredible year for Stokes and his team. Image: Alamy

8. Real Madrid's Iconic Champions League Winning Run

Real Madrid's 14th European Cup winning run was one of the most incredible and exciting span of games that the competition has ever seen; they beat Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool to secure a famous league and cup double.

During the run, they were losing in each of the second matches of their two-legged knockout ties, but inspirational play from the likes of Karim Benzema, Rodryo, Luka Modric and others saw them win from impossible situations time and time again - we still can't believe their run.

7. Leon Edwards Knocks Out Usman

In late August, Leon Edwards knocked out Kamaru Usman to become the undisputed UFC Welterweight Champion of the World with one of the most incredible knockouts of the year.

Edwards had one hell of a battle just to finally get a crack at the title but Usman looked to be on the way to a 15th win in-a-row.

The Nigerian had dominated the first four rounds, Edwards' coach told him to stop feeling sorry for himself, the commentators had all but given up and in the final minute of the final round he delivered one of the best kicks to the head you'll see, AND NEW!

In 2023 he'll defend the title in London at a pay-per-view, British MMA is in a golden period.

6. Premier League Final Day Drama

The final day of the Premier League saw Liverpool and Manchester City both fighting for the title, with City facing Aston Villa at home, whilst Liverpool faced Wolves at Anfield.

With City 2-0 down, all Liverpool needed to do was score and they'd be top of the table, but they were kept at bay for much of the game.

Pep Guardiola's side battled back to lead 3-2 against Steven Gerrard's team and by the time Mohamed Salah put them ahead it was too late.

Liverpool somehow never led the title race on the last day, but it didn't stop it being one of the most dramatic in recent history.

5. Katie Taylor vs Amanda Serrano

In a year where women's sport rose to its highest peaks, Katie Taylor and Amanda Serrano etched themselves in boxing and sporting history with their iconic 10-round undisputed lightweight contest, in a sold-out Madison Square Garden.

Taylor become undisputed champion with a split-decision victory, in what was one of the fight's of the year across all boxing, as both women put on a show the likes of which the world will never forget.

Serrano and Taylor put on a hell of a show. Image: Alamy
Serrano and Taylor put on a hell of a show. Image: Alamy

4. Cristiano Ronaldo Interview

Cristiano Ronaldo's second spell at Manchester United was tumultuous to say the least, as his interview with journalist Piers Morgan became global news as he publicly criticised Erik ten Hag, the club and players in an interview seen by millions upon millions of people.

As a result, he left United as a free agent, only to then be rejected by every top club in Europe, before settling on a move to Saudi Arabian club Al-Nassr. Who saw that coming?

3. Roger Federer's Retirement

An icon of the sport of tennis, Roger Federer retired from the sport aged 41, after a long and highly-successful career but he eventually succumbed to a knee injury which forced him to retire.

His final appearance saw him team up in the Rod Laver Cup with long-time rival, and friend, Rafael Nadal, and the video of the pair crying together is a beautiful and incredibly moving moment for a player who's beloved by all.

Nadal may have beaten the record for most slams won, Djokovic will likely follow, but they'll only ever be one GOAT.

2. England Women Win the Euros

England's Lionesses made history as over 365 million people watched Chloe Kelly's extra-time goal edge out Germany 2-1 in the final at a sold out Wembley.

A year after the men's team lost on penalties in the same stadium, England's women ended England's 56-year wait for a major international title in senior football.

Next year, Sarina Wiegman will be hoping that she can lead her team to world glory, although she sadly may have to do it without Sports Personality of the Year winner Beth Mead.

England women made history. Image: Alamy
England women made history. Image: Alamy
Messi kisses the trophy that is now his, nothing else could have been number one moment. Image: Alamy
Messi kisses the trophy that is now his, nothing else could have been number one moment. Image: Alamy

1. Lionel Messi completes football

The World Cup in Qatar drew a lot of controversy overall, but there's no doubt the 2022 final will go down as perhaps the greatest in the tournament's history.

A nail-biting affair between two of the world's best teams saw goals, a penalty shootout and drama aplenty, as Messi won the only trophy that has ever eluded him.

For many it ended the debate as to who the greatest ever in the sport is, with the seven time Ballon d'Or winner lifting the World Cup trophy high above his head, it felt like it had been written in the stars and he also won the Golden Ball too.

What will 2023 bring? Whatever it is, we can't wait!

Featured Image Credit: Alamy/Talk TV

Topics: Boxing, Cricket, Football, Rugby, Tennis, UFC, WWE, Lionel Messi, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, Cristiano Ronaldo, Stone Cold Steve Austin

George Priestman
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