Key moments from the world of sport in 2012

Updated: 2012-12-23 08:12

(China Daily)

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Jan 28 - Victoria Azarenka becomes the first Belarusian to win a Grand Slam singles title in tennis by claiming the Australian Open.

Jan 29 - Novak Djokovic wins his third Australian Open, beating Rafa Nadal 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7, 7-5 in a 5 hr, 53 min slugfest, the longest tennis Grand Slam final played.

Feb 5 - The New York Giants win the greatest prize in North American sports for the second time in four years with a nail-biting 21-17 Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots in Indianapolis.

March 17 - Wales beats France 16-9 in Cardiff to complete the Grand Slam and win rugby's Six Nations title for the third time in eight seasons.

April 8 - American golfer Bubba Watson beats South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen on the second extra hole to win the Masters at Augusta National.

May 5 - I'll Have Another, ridden by Mexican jockey Mario Gutierrez, wins the 138th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs before a record crowd of more than 165,000.

May 19 - London soccer club Chelsea downs German team Bayern Munich on penalties to win the European Champions League for the first time.

May 27 - Scotland's Dario Franchitti wins the 96th Indianapolis 500 and joins an elite band of drivers to win America's most famous race at least three times.

June 9 - Russia's Maria Sharapova wins the French Open tennis championship to become just the 10th woman to complete collection of Grand Slam trophies.

June 11 - Rafa Nadal beats Novak Djokovic to win the French Open for a record seventh time.

June 11 - The Los Angeles Kings win the Stanley Cup for the first time in the team's 45-year history by defeating the New Jersey Devils 4-2 in the best-of-seven National Hockey League championship.

June 17 - American golfer Webb Simpson clinches his first major title with a nerve-jangling one-shot victory at the US Open in San Francisco.

June 21 - LeBron James captures his first National Basketball Association title by leading the Miami Heat to a 4-1 series win over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

July 1 - Spain thrashes Italy 4-0 in the final of Euro 2012 in Ukraine, the biggest victory margin in any World Cup or European Championship decider.

July 7 - Serena Williams wins Wimbledon for the fifth time, her first Grand Slam success since she survived a life-threatening blood clot on her lungs.

July 8 - Switzerland's Roger Federer beats Andy Murray to win a record-equaling seventh Wimbledon title.

July 22 - South African golfer Ernie Els wins the British Open at age 42 after Australia's Adam Scott bogeys the final four holes.

July 22 - Bradley Wiggins becomes the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France.

July 27 - The London Olympics begin with a spectacular opening where seven teenagers light the cauldron.

Aug 4 - American swimmer Michael Phelps ends his incredible Olympic career on the perfect note, winning his fourth gold medal in London and his 18th overall, twice as many as any other athlete.

Aug 5 - Usain Bolt retains his Olympic 100 meters title in London. The Jamaican sprinter also wins gold medals in the 200 and 4x100 relay to replicate his treble from the 2008 Beijing Games.

Aug 13 - London bids farewell to the Olympic Games with the traditional closing ceremony, bringing the curtain down on more than two weeks of action where the US topped the medal table with 46 gold.

Aug 13 - Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy wins the PGA Championship at Kiawah Island by a record eight shots.

Aug 24 - The United States Anti-Doping Agency announces that American cyclist Lance Armstrong is banned for life and stripped of his seven Tour de France title wins after refusing to contest charges he used performance-enhancing drugs.

Sept 9 - Serena Williams survives a torrid battle with Azarenka to win the US Open at age 30, 13 years after she won the first of her four titles at Flushing Meadows.

Sept 10 - Andy Murray becomes the first British man in 76 years to win a grand slam singles title by beating Djokovic in the US Open final.

Sept 29 - The New Zealand All Blacks seal the southern hemisphere's inaugural rugby championship with a 54-15 win over Argentina in La Plata.

Sept 30 - Europe produces one of the greatest last-day comebacks seen on a golf course to beat the US to retain the The Ryder Cup.

Oct 7 - West Indies wins the Twenty20 World Cup bybeating hosts Sri Lanka by 36 runs in the final.

Oct 20 - British racehorse Frankel is retired after winning the Champions Stakes at Ascot, finishing his flawless career with 14 wins from 14 starts.

Oct 28 - Spain's Jorge Lorenzo seals his second MotoGP title by cruising to second place in the Australian Grand Prix.

Oct 28 - The San Francisco Giants complete a 4-0 sweep of the Detroit Tigers to win Major League Baseball's World Series for the second time in three years.

Nov 25 - Germany's Sebastian Vettel finishes sixth in the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix to become the youngest triple champion in Formula One history.


(China Daily 12/23/2012 page8)