2012: the sports year in pictures
It was another sporting year that left you breathless, with the highlight undoubtedly the London 2012 Games that provided us with
so many incredible memories.
From the Bond / Queen / Mr Bean opening, through to supreme
athletes like Phelps, Le Clos, Farah and Bolt, and on to the British
music celebration finale, it most certainly achieved its objective of
bringing the Games back to the people.
There was so much else that held the attention too, what with
the Proteas going to No 1; Ernie Els and Louis Oosthuizen's efforts in
the golf majors; a new Bok coach; an incredible year in tennis; Messi
mesmerising the world with his outrageous talent and some nailbiting
seasons in motorsport - the list just goes on and on.
In celebration we have put together some picture galleries
that attempt to summarise the year, and hopefully bring back some
fantastic memories for you.
And don't forget to leave us your thoughts on the year in the
Comments section below, we'd love to hear about your highs and lows
from following sport in 2012.
In terms of South African interest in Super Rugby, the
2012 edition was better than most, with three local sides making it
into the extended round of play-offs, and one into the final.
here for the Super Rugby season in pictures
The Springboks' first year under new coach Heyneke
started with a series win over England, moved into a slightly
disappointing Rugby Championship, and ended with an undefeated tour of
the northern hemisphere.
here for the Boks' year in pictures
The inaugural Castle Rugby Championship proved a massive
challenge for new Bok coach Heyneke Meyer, and showed New Zealand to be
in a league of their own.
here for the Rugby Championship in pictures
The fact a team that hadn’t won the golden trophy
years managed to break the drought saved the Currie Cup year from the
anonymity that threatened during the season.
here for the Currie Cup in pictures
New Zealand were the undisputed kings of rugby this
year, dominating all forms of the game. 2012 did, however, provide us
with plenty of upsets and talking points.
here for the international year in pictures
The year started with Zambia winning the Africa Cup of Nations. Orlando
Pirates were the top team in SA again; Cameroon failed to qualify for
the 2013 Afcon after being knocked out by Cape Verde, and Didier Drogba
dominated headlines throughout the year.
here for the African year in pictures
Barcelona and Argentina star Lionel Messi was the
dominant force in European and international football, his goals
keeping Barca in pole position for yet another silverware in the club's history.
Elsewhere, the EPL celebrated 20 years of glory while Chelsea made it a
cup double by pocketing both the Champions League and FA Cup titles.
here for the European year in pictures
The Proteas had a very successful year, with
test-series victories against both England and Australia away from home
to finish top of the ICC test rankings. They did,
however, disappoint again in an ICC event, namely the World
Future talents have been established, in the form of
Vernon Philander, Faf du Plessis and Morne Morkel, while old stalwarts
like Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers and Dale Steyn stepped up to the
plate when required. And then, of course, there is Jacques
here for the Proteas' season in pictures
2012 saw SA rise to the number one test spot, and the West Indies claim
the World T20 crown. Highly respected and influential cricketers
retired - Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, Brett Lee, Mark Boucher, Andrew
Strauss and Ricky Ponting - while Kevin Pietersen made the headlines
for all the wrong reasons.
here for international cricket's year in pictures
Titans bagged two trophies in the past year - the SuperSport
the MiWay T20 in the 2011/12 season, while the bizhub
Highveld Lions and Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras shared the Momentum Cup,
the year where Stephen Cook of the Highveld Lions matured with age,
given the responsibility of the captaincy. We also saw Farhaan
in the 20-over competition, and both Richard Levi and Henry Davids hit
top-scored in the 50-over format. Fast bowler
Hardus Viljoen had an outstanding year for the Lions, and Andrew Birch
for the Warriors in all competitions.
here for SA domestic cricket's year in pictures
Olympics and Paralympics
It was dubbed 'The Games of the People', and the organisers of the
London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games ensured that all those people
that attended would never forget this incredible showpiece of sport.
Michael Phelps etched his name at the top of the Greatest of
All Time list; Usain Bolt added to his growing legend; the home
athletes thrilled the crowds, and there was plenty of gold brought back
to SA shores.
A real thrill-a-minute Games
here for London 2012 in pictures
here for the best videos from the London 2012 Olympics
Plenty for South Africans to get excited about in 2012 as Louis
Oosthuizen battled Bubba at the Masters; Ernie Els snuck in the back
door to claim his fourth major at the Open Championship; Branden Grace
took Europe by storm in his rookie season, and European Tour events
came flooding into SA.
Elsewhere, Rory McIlroy enhanced his growing reputation, while
Tiger Woods continued his climb back up the rankings. The Europeans won
an incredible Ryder Cup, staging the greatest final-day comeback ever.
2013 is going to be a great year if 2012 was anything to go by!
here for the golfing year in pictures
It was a year in which the men shared the spoils, with four
separate Slam winners for the first time since 2003, while Serena
Williams furthered her claim to being one of the greatest-ever players
with a Slam and Olympic double.
Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray
claimed a Slam each, but you'd probably give the year to Murray after
his Olympic gold in front of his home crowds. Federer became the
longest-reigning No 1 of all time, but Djokovic ended the year as the
And as for Serena's exploits - well, just check out the gallery to find
here for the tennis year in pictures
Where to start in describing the year on wheels?
A thrilling F1 season, where a legend also bade his second farewell; a
MotoGP year that saw a fight to the bitter end; an SBK season that saw
the top two separated by half a point, and a rally champion that can
lay claim to being the greatest driver on the planet, so great is his
It's all here in the motorsport gallery...
here for the motorsport year in pictures
The Klitschko brothers continued to dominate the heavyweight division
but the best boxing of 2012 was provided by fighters in the lighter
here for the boxing year in pictures