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Gus Mears

Best British Sportsperson of Your Lifetime

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1 hour ago, Factotum said:

Andy Murray has to be there. To do what he did, in the era that he did it, puts him right at the top for me. Also a fantastic tactician.

I would say its then a fight between Wiggins, Froome, Mo, Redgrave.

I think Jessica Ennis would be in there had she won the gold at the last Olympics. Definitely in the top 10.

If we are counting Darts, then Ronnie O'Sullivan is in there

What puts me off Ennis is that she seems so far up her own arse. I hate athletes like that. What amazes me about Murray is he seems so humble. The Davis Cup where he didn't lose a match and won all but 1 of Britain's points.

I'm not even a fan of tennis (I do sometimes watch) but I do think they are the best athletes ever. So strong, quick with mind and body and they seem to be able to go on for hours at a time with just bits of lucozade. They then go and play again a day or 2 later and usually enter 20 or so tournaments a year. 

 

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Just now, westlondonmist said:

What puts me off Ennis is that she seems so far up her own arse.

 

I personally haven't seen anything like that - do you have anything you can point to where she gave that impression? Genuine question.

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I've never got that vibe from Ennis-Hill. Only thing I didn't like were those godawful HSBC adverts with her and Jenson Button. 

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I don't think of her as up her own arse, and even if she were, if you're an elite sportsman, who cares? Daley Thompson is not a humble man, and nor should he be. 

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8 minutes ago, Carbomb said:

I personally haven't seen anything like that - do you have anything you can point to where she gave that impression? Genuine question.

I just feel that when I see her in interviews. I could be wrong, and she could be quite nice. However I wouldn't doubt her talent, heptathlon is an amazing thing to win. You have to be good at 7 events, even though she only got one Olympic win she got 3 world golds so I do think she is worthy of a top 10 entry in best British sports men. 

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2 hours ago, tiger_rick said:

Firstly, the weight of hope on his shoulders. He came into Men's tennis at a time where, despite Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski working hard to change it, Brits had acheived nothing for generations. Secondly, unlike Heavyweight boxing and other sports we could think of, Murray existed at a time when Men's Tennis was it's all-time highest in terms of quality and won grand slams in the same era as three of the best there have ever been.

Absolutely, and for me it's also Murray. If you watched his first Wimbledon final, where he lost to Federer (who is probably the greatest tennis player that has ever lived) and didn't bawl your eyes out when he gave his speech, you have no soul. Murray winning Wimbledon is easily my favourite non-football sporting moment in my life. I've watched tennis with my Mum for as long as I can remember and seeing the next Brit come though do a little bit better than the last...Jeremy Bates, Rusedski, then Henman. Murray winning the big one was such an emotional moment. I really like him as well, he's massively misunderstood (oh he's so miserable and has no personality blah blah) and a funny guy.

Don't know where this 'Ennis is up her own arse' thing is coming from. Has always seemed sound to me.

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2 hours ago, Factotum said:

If we are counting Darts, then Ronnie O'Sullivan is in there

Does Ronnie O'Sullivan play darts?

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34 minutes ago, Carbomb said:

I personally haven't seen anything like that - do you have anything you can point to where she gave that impression? Genuine question.

A lad I used to work with met her once on a night out and challenged her to a race. He’s in his 30s, severely obese and his knees are shot. She’d have hammered him. 

She didn’t even accept his challenge. She’s a fucking fraud.

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Some great shouts here thus far. 

Redgrave -  I think he'd be my pick overall. Rowing is an absolute cunt of a sport when it comes to the lactic acid you build up and the synergy required with your crew. The training schedules are pretty punishing for the athletes as well. Yes, it's rowing in a straight line but to do it at that pace and power for that period of time is an absolutely massive effort. There are athletes across other Olympic disciplines who have won multiple medals, but to do so at five different Games is just absolutely insane, especially when you consider the chances of that happening in general are pretty remote, and his last gold in Sydney went right down to the wire. 16 years or so at the top of your game and five GOLD medals. Absolute don. Matthew Pinsent also deserves an honourable mention for achieving four golds across four Olympics - that's another incredible achievement. 

Ronnie - I would say he is probably my favourite rather than the best if you're matching up against other sports. Rick's right to a degree in that fitness doesn't play as big a part in Snooker as it does in other sports (although Ronnie is probably the fittest of any of them what with his running exploits off the table), but the sheer skill it requires not just to complete pots, but to manipulate the cue ball, keep calm under immense pressure and to be creative and clever enough to get in/out of snookers during safety battles is mesmerising. With the exception of maybe Judd Trump and to a lesser degree Mark Allen, there's nobody who can do what Ronnie does. He can be very stroppy at times, but he is the greatest that's ever played the game and by the most entertaining. He's been doing it for so long now and shows no signs of slowing down. If anything he's probably playing the best snooker of his career now - He's won a fortune in prize money already this season and he hasn't even entered all of the tournaments. He's the last of an iconic two decades of true Snooker rockstars. 

Chris Hoy - Belongs in the conversation. Multiple golds at three Olympic Games and also a silver in Sydney, so medals at four Games overall. Track Cycling is another sport that's immensely punishing in terms of the training and the velocity of the races, and in Hoy's case a lot of those golds came in close-fought sprint contests. Wiggo is rightly in the conversation as well and you could argue that his ability to perform on both track and road put him in contention, but Hoy has served as the inspiration for so many through his Olympic performances, and he's one of the few cyclists that I don't think have ever been called into question for anything drug-related. Always comes across as a good egg (even for a cyclist). 

David Weir - As a para-athlete I think he also deserves to be in the conversation. Six Paralympic gold medals along with silver and bronze medals across four Para Games, six IPC World Championship golds, two Para-World cup golds, eight London Marathon titles. He's also broken the record for what I think is the world's fastest mile, breaking the four-minute barrier in 2017. He is an incredibly dull interviewee, but his achievements are absolutely remarkable. 

Murray - Certainly deserves to be hailed as one of the best considering the era that he's been playing in. I think I'd still give it to Redgrave but Murray absolutely deserves all of the plaudits that are coming his way. Incredible dedication to the game. Also, considering the Olympics isn't necessarily a huge goal for Tennis players as it isn't their most coveted prize, he absolutely relished playing a leading role for Team GB across two games and treated it with the upmost respect. 

 

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Really felt sorry for Murray. He literally gave it his all. I wouldn't like to have a hip replacement in the early 30s. Would be excruciating. It's amazing he's been still going a bit with it. It'll be full on tears at Wimbledon, if he makes it.

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6 hours ago, Gus Mears said:

 *The lifetime bit is so @Thunderplex can tell us about Stanley Matthews and Herbert Sutcliffe. 

Whats up Gus?  Jealous due to my schoolmates being more famous than yours?

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Murray is definitely up there. It's fairly mad he's only 31 given his record and how battered his body. You can maybe argue he's been robbed a bit of some of his potential due to his Scottish genetics.

Also, that time he made Sarah Silverman lose her mind when his name got brought up:

 

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In an individual sport it's easier to see the brilliance. Ronnie O'Sullivan, Phil Taylor, Andy Murray, Joe Calzaghe, Chris Hoy are all potential shouts. Then you have the sports where it's a small number of people in the team. Sir Steve Redgrave, Sir Bradley Wiggins, Chris Froome.  

To stand out as one of the best players ever in a team sport is hard. I'm a little bit older than most of you, but the man I'm picking is arguably the best Rugby player of all time, and definitely the best British rugby player of all time, Gareth Edwards. Speed, power,  athleticism,  vision, skill, he had everything. He stood out in a team of incredible talents. That try against the All Blacks for the Barbarians is the greatest try of all time. Admittedly I was only 1 at the time he scored it in 1973, but he played in my lifetime so I'm claiming it. 

As a fan of England it pains me to say that a Welsh player was the best, but no one comes close. To Gareth Edwards. 

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