SPORTS- 2018-THE YEARS THAT WAS…

The year 2018 saw many ups and downs in players performance in different sports all over the world.It was a big year for many athletes as major events like Commonwealth Games and Asian Games were held.

Gold rush in Gold Coast
Commonwealth Games took place in April at Gold Coast in Australia.As expected,host nation Australia topped the table with total of 198 medals including 80 golds.This is the fourth time in last five CWG,Australia have been on top of medals tally.England and India finished second and third respectively.
Asian Supremacy
18th Asian Games were held in Jakarta and Palembang from 18th August to Sept.2nd.China led the medals tally for tenth consecutive time.They won a total of 289 medals including record 132 golds.Another heavyweights Japan too crossed 200 mark including 75 golds.South Korea,Indonesia and Uzbekistan completed the top five line up.Big improvement was there to see by India who won record 15 golds,24 silver and 30 bronze totalling 69 medals
This was India’s best ever performance in terms of medals in Asian Games history.They retained their eighth place overall this time too.There were 6 World,18 Asian and 86 Asian Games record broken during the Games.
FIFA Glory
In between CWG and Asiad,the major sporting event took place was FIFA World Cup.Soccer fans witnessed enthralling football over a period of one month in Russia.There were some shocks like Germany failing to go past group stage.Croatia reached the finals surprisingly while Three Lions wait for second world title continued when England lost to Croatia after extra time.France finally won World Cup for the second time after 1998 by beating Croatia 4-2 in the final.Kylian Mbappe was the star of World Cup.
As far as other team events are concerned,in tennis Croatia won Davis Cup for second time.Meanwhile Czech Republic won Fed Cup for sixth time.
Individual champions
There were no surprises in Grand Slam winners in tennis on men’s circuit.Roger Federer started off with Australian Open title while King of Clay Rafael Nadal won a record 11th French Open title.Novak Djokovic made a successful comeback from injury as he lifted the final two Slams.
In F1,Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton won fifth Formula One title of his career.Mercedes also won Constructors Championships.
Unlike tennis,golf saw birth of new champions.
Patrick Reed won the Masters while Fransesco Molinari won The Open Championships.Brooks Koepka won the other two majors viz.US Open and PGA Championships.
Leagues
In football,Manchester City won English Premier League while Barcelona were champions in La-Liga.
Bayern Munich were German champions while Juventus reigned supreme in Italy.
Retirements
One of the most memorable moment came in May 2018 when Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger bid adieu to the club.He has led the Gunners for 22 seasons and he was the most successful manager for the English outfit.
Controversies
Football world was shocked when five time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo was accused of rape by Kathryn Mayorga in Palms Casino Resort in 2009.The legal battle for Juventus star continues.
While there were champions like Mo Farah,Lewis Hamilton and Roger Federer in 2018,we hope to see many more in 2019.
By Shailesh Padhye