The greatest sporting feats

Andrew Baker, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Jim Laker’s 19-wicket Ashes Test haul at Old Trafford and the 40th anniversary of Geoff Hurst’s World Cup hat trick, outlines ten all-time great sporting feats.

Somehow, he managed to include ice dancing.

But what might be your choice?

Here’s Baker’s list, as if appeared in Monday’s Daily Telegraph.

Jim Laker: The scourge of Australia on a memorable day at Old Trafford, as pictured right

Geoff Hurst: The back-up who won the World Cup with his hat-trick

Torvill & Dean: So stylish they turned ice dance into a national obsession

Anil Kumble: Leg-spinner who matched Laker’s feat against India’s big rivals

Mark Spitz
: Swam his way to Olympic history with seven golds in one Games

Frankie Dettori: Took the bookies to the cleaners and punters to seventh heaven

Steffi Graf: West Germany’s golden girl who won all there was to win in 1988

Jesse Owens: Versatile athlete who laid waste to Hitler’s masterplan for the 1936 Olympics

Nadia Comaneci: Romanian gymnast who beamed her way to greatness

Jonny Wilkinson: The extra-time hero of Sydney with the golden left boot

Baker admits there’s no Babe Ruth or Botham, nor Tiger or Nicklaus, nor is there any mention of Bannister or Coe. Are all his choices worthy ones? Or what are the other notable omissions?

Make your views known by posting a comment here.

And click here to read about an innovative proposal to celebrate the Boys of ’66