Saturday 19 September, 2020

Bolt’s Olympic exploits top ABC's sports performances of the decade

Usain Bolt celebrates after one of his many victories during his decorated athletics career.

Usain Bolt celebrates after one of his many victories during his decorated athletics career.

The Olympic sprint exploits of the world’s fastest man, Usain Bolt, have been ranked by US news network ABC as the best among sporting performances over the last decade.

Bolt’s double triple gold medal haul in 2012 and 2016 was hailed as the brightest spark in a decade filled with glorious sporting moments.  

“Bolt, the impossibly cool, wickedly fast sprinter from Jamaica, changed the sport of sprinting throughout the decade. Never was his dominance more evident than in London when he walked into the Olympics as something of an underdog -- despite becoming a worldwide celebrity following the 2008 games. He had lost in his country's qualifiers to up-and-coming star Yohan Blake before heading to London. But big-time stars come up big in big-time situations. The fastest man on the planet came out of the gates slow -- not unusual -- before passing American Justin Gatlin and Blake and shattering the Olympic record. Bolt cruised -- literally, taking a chance to peek at his rival Blake before the line -- to gold in the 200-meter final and then earned a three-event sweep with a gold in the 4x100-meter relay," stated the article penned by ABC’s Mark Osborne.

Osborne added: "After the 100-meter final, (Bolt) called himself the "greatest athlete to live." Four years later, it was pretty impossible to argue he wasn't at least in the discussion. Bolt completed another three-event sweep in 2016 at the Rio Olympics just two days before his 30th birthday. By 2017, he'd won every 100-meter race he'd entered for four years. And while he lost at the 2017 world championships, the 2012 and 2016 Olympics will go down in history forever.” 

Bolt’s rise to the top of the track and field world was hailed over the historic Chicago Cubs come from behind 4-3 World Series baseball win in 2016 over the Cleveland Indians, the US women’s soccer team's World Cup victory in France last year, the four gold medal haul of US gymnastics star Simone Biles, and the Golden State Warriors NBA wins of 2015, 2017 and 2018.

Other performances Osborne thought worthy of mention were Michael Phelps' exploits in the swimming pool, a physics defying touchdown by New York Giants’ Odell Beckham Jnr and the New England Patriots spectacular victory over the Seattle Seahawks in the 2014 Super Bowl.

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