Australia has long been a country that punches above its weight in terms of sporting prowess here we highlight ten picks of amazing moments in Australian sporting history.
The 1948 Tour of England
The Australian cricket team in England in 1948 was captained by Don Bradman, who was making his fourth and final tour of England. The team is famous for being the only Test match side to play an entire tour of England without losing a match. This feat earned them the nickname of “The Invincibles”, and they are regarded as one of the greatest cricket teams of all time. According to the Australian federal government the team “is one of Australia’s most cherished sporting legends”.
The 1959 United States Grand Prix
Australian race car driver and developer, Jack Brabham, led the race almost to the end before running out of fuel on the last lap. With the championship on the line, he pushed his Cooper race car to the finish line taking fourth place, and the championship. Sir John Arthur Brabham, AO, OBE (2 April 1926 – 19 May 2014) was Formula One World Champion in 1959, 1960, and 1966, and remains the first and only driver to win the World Formula 1 Championship in a car of his own making, the Brabham BT19.
1996 Atlanta Olympics – Swimming Gold
Kieren Perkins, the reigning Olympic champion, scraping into the final of the Men’s
1500-metre Freestyle at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, and going on to win the gold medal
from the unfancied lane eight.
1989 Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix
Australian Wayne Gardner had previously won the world title in 1987 and with a huge home-town following, he won the inaugural 500cc Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix at Phillip Island in 1989.
1988 Seoul Olympics & Hockeyroos Gold
Australia’s Women’s Hockey team (Hockeyroos) win Australia’s first-ever Gold Medal in Olympic hockey competition at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
1984 Rugby Union Grand Slam
The 1984 Wallabies were the first and only Australian side to achieve a Grand Slam doing so in four Tests against the Home Nations.
1983 America’s Cup
John Bertrand skippered the innovative Australia II designed by Ben Lexcen to defeat the New York Yacht Club and become the first successful challenger in 132 years and ending won of the longest winning streaks in sporting history.
Evonne Goolagong Cawley winning the women’s Wimbledon singles title for the second time
and becoming the first mother in 66 years to achieve that feat.
1977 Centenary Test
The first Centenary Test was played in March 1977 to commemorate the match that is considered to be the first Test match, played in 1877. Both the 1877 and 1977 matches were played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne, Australia. Remarkably, Australia won both matches by exactly the same margin, 45 runs.
1969 Tennis Grand Slam
Rod Laver becoming the only man to win the Grand Slam (all four major tournaments in the
same calendar year) twice when winning the US Open by defeating Tony Roche in the final.