Tensest Sporting Moment

Sheva

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I was watching the Pot Black this afternoon, and it got me thinking back to the 1985 world final between Davis and Taylor. One o’clock in the morning, BBC2, almost 20 million viewers. Absolute suspense.

I was trying to think of other moments which have had that sort of impact. The obvious one is penalty shootouts in football, but they’re relatively common nowadays. Any ideas?

 
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NICK FALDO, 1995

Oak Hill Country Club, Rochester, N.Y.

In a reprisal of the 1988 U.S. Open playoff won by Curtis Strange at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., Nick Faldo prevailed this time in a singles victory instrumental in lifting the European side to its second Ryder Cup Matches win on American soil. In the previous two days at Oak Hill, Faldo had twice reached the 18th hole all square, only to lose both matches.

This time, Strange held a clear advantage off the tee when Faldo sliced his tee shot into the right-hand ankle-deep rough and decided to lay up 95 yards short of the flag. With a much longer drive up the fairway, Strange hit his 3- iron approach fat and was short of the green in the nasty rough on the steep slope below the elevated green. Faldo then produced a stunning shot worthy of a gentleman who owns three Masters and three British Open titles, wedging to within four feet of the flag. Inspired by Faldo's crisp shot, Strange answered with a chip out of the tough rough to within six feet.

Putting first, Strange knew his reputation as a wild-card choice by U.S. Captain Lanny Wadkins was at stake. If he made it, he would justify his selection. Miss it, and the bogey-bogey-bogey finish would not only hold the wild-card pick up to scrutiny, but would go a long way toward letting Europe wrest the Ryder Cup away from the U.S. Strange's putt caught the right lip and stayed out. Faldo, so overcome with nerves that he had closed his eyes while Strange putted, managed to calm down and roll the ball into the center of the cup for a sensational come-from-behind win after trailing by three holes with three to play.

"That was the greatest scrambling par of my life. It was as good as Muirfield in '87," said Faldo. "Actually, that last putt was tougher because if I miss, I go four feet past and I have to start negotiating with Curtis. That scrambling par really turned the momentum in our (Europe's) favor and I think it was a crippling blow to the Americans. I think they had that win on the board when they saw Curtis was 3-up with three to play. But that's the Ryder Cup."

 

musicbox

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Sampras-Ivanisevic Wimbledon 1998

Ivanisevic-Rafter 2001

Australia-England 2003 Rugby World Cup final, extra time, Johnny W. seals it with dropped goal. That was quite tense.

Last five mins of Man Utdagainst Bayern in 1999 Champions League final.

 

jeffg

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musicbox wrote:

.........Australia-England 2003 Rugby World Cup final, extra time, Johnny W. seals it with dropped goal. That was quite tense.
Yeah, that's the stand-out one for me.

Mind you have seen some pretty tense badminton matches. Robertson/Emms in their mixed doubles semi-final at this years All England was really nerve wracking - honest
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reg

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One that really sticks in my memory is the 4x400m relay at the 1991 World Championships.

Kris Akabusi is twenty or so meters behind the Americans in the final lap and slowly winds him in over the last 100m to win by about a metre and take gold. With me screaming at the telly the whole way.

Marvellous.

 

Boxer

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The original post is, IMO, one of the best....

Agree with 2003 World Cup & 1999 European Cup also.

Would also nominate the 2005 European Cup - 2nd half comeback by the red Scousers, holding on through extra-time, then the penalties - Dudek's performance, all the Liverpool penalty takers holding their nerve, & Schevchenko, of all people, missing...... loads of beer was consumed at Boxer Towers, just to keep the blood pressure down, you understand....

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JamPal

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Closing minutes of extra time - Telstra Stadium, Sydney 2003.

Gregan knows whats about to happen, however my nought was flashing like you wouldn't beleive.

_39619829_dropgoal_getty.jpg


Followed by:

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Deffo!

Too bloody early to be drinking though, so nearly chewed the arm off the sofa!

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hifikrazy

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My personal favourite was the long jump final of the Tokyo World Athletics Championship which ended up effectively being between Carl Lewis (still the best long jumper in history in my view, his technique was perfect) and Mike Powell culminating in Mike Powell breaking Bob Beamons old world record.

 

Craig

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Monaco GP 1992

Senna vs Mansell for the last 15 or so laps (I think, it seemed like years)

Mansell had a puncture after trashing the field and came out behind Senna who held him off.

Cannot stand Mansell but it was top drawer drama all the same

 

Tons of Fun

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reg wrote:

One that really sticks in my memory is the 4x400m relay at the 1991 World Championships.Kris Akabusi is twenty or so meters behind the Americans in the final lap and slowly winds him in over the last 100m to win by about a metre and take gold. With me screaming at the telly the whole way.

Marvellous.
You'll excuse my language but that was absolutely fucking magic. As I recall that was an excellent World Championship all round.

 

Boxer

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And the 1988 Tour de France: last stage is the time trial into Paris; Fignon is c50sec ahead of Lemond; Lemond absolutely storms it & wins by about a minute over Fignon, hence winning the Tour by 8 seconds, the smallest winning margin in what is, after all, a 3 week 2000+ k race. Awesome!

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Chumpy

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I agree with the snooker and rugby and footie ones and also found 2005 cricket Ashes matchesall tense. I find all of my footie team's matches too tense when I should be enjoying things a bit more.

I have learned not to get caught up in penalty shoot-out 'excitement' unless the team I want to win does score more.

 

Emma Royd

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For me its a personal one,the Charlton/Sunderland play-off final.The whole event from kick-off to the end of the penalties was bloody tense and for both sets of fans not that enjoyable,ok for the neutrals.

Coming back in the coach was dead quite due to being mentally drained,it really was that tense.

 

griffo104

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Emma Royd wrote:

For me its a personal one,the Charlton/Sunderland play-off final.The whole event from kick-off to the end of the penalties was bloody tense and for both sets of fans not that enjoyable,ok for the neutrals.Coming back in the coach was dead quite due to being mentally drained,it really was that tense.
I remember watching this on TV - stunning game of football. Glad I was a neutral during it otherwise I might not be here now.

Again mine is personal, an 11 year old lad and his Dad, the kid's bedroom and a black and white TV, Peter Withe's shin, my heart in my mouth for most of the game.

As a life long Villa fan it really doesn't get any better.

 

Sheva

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Decided to rekindle this, because that 4th set tiebreak was probably the highlight of the best tennis match i've seen.

 

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