Best Ever Sporting Comeback Achievements

Tiger Woods completed a fairytale ending to the 2019 Masters, winning his fifth green jacket and a 15th major title in the process - 11 years after winning his last.

After years of problems, injuries and persona, issues, Woods defied all the odds and silenced detractors to leave himself three short of Jack Nicklaus’ majors record. This achievement is regarded as the greatest in the sport of golf.

Sporting comebacks of such significance are few and far between, but they do occasionally pop up and inspire a generation. So, where does Tiger's comeback stand alongside other incredible individual sporting achievements? Here are some of the greatest comebacks in sporting history…

Muhammad Ali - 1974

Ali’s place among the pantheon of boxing greats is undisputed, but there was a certain comeback that helped cement that status. After refusing to join the US army in 1966, Ali was effectively exiled from the sport for four years - leading to many thinking he was done and dusted.

After suffering the first defeat of his career in 1971 against Joe Frazier, Ali pulled off an incredible victory three years later. He was written off, but scored an eighth round knockout against George Foreman to reclaim the world heavyweight crown at the age of 32.

Roger Federer - 2017

Already lauded as the greatest male tennis player of all time, Roger Federer's 2017 Australian victory was still truly remarkable for a number of reasons.  The Swiss maestro had missed the previous six months with an injury, and at the age of 35, no one fancied him to even make the second week.

But defying all the odds, Federer went on to win the Australian Open, beating his great rival, Rafael Nadal in a five set final epic.

Monica Seles - 1996

Monica Seles produced another tennis comeback, but in a different way to Federer's remarkable achievement. Seles had a near death experience in 1993, having been stabbed on court by a pitch-invader.

Seles did not make a return to the game for two years, but her remarkable comeback was complete when she won the Australian Open in 1996. There is no question, had it not been for the stabbing, the former world number one could have been the greatest there ever was.

Steve Redgrave - 2000

Steve Redgrave joined the ranks of the genuine sporting giants when he picked up his fifth consecutive rowing gold medal at the Sydney 2000 Games. After winning his first four golds, Redgrave jokingly asked anyone seeing him going near a boat again to ‘shoot’ him!

But he still got in the boat, and astonishingly, at the age of 38 he joined Great Britain’s coxless four in Sydney. They won gold, which cemented Sir Steve’s status as a rowing legend, and the greatest British Olympian of them all.

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