2018 in the rearview mirror: From Sardar Singh to Novak Djokovic, notable retirements and comebacks of year
From Sardar Singh and Shiva Keshavan's retirements to Tiger Woods and Novak Djokovic's comebacks, it was an eventful year, one in which Arsene Wenger also bid adieu to Arsenal after over two decades in charge
Some of the biggest names in the world of sports — be it former India kabaddi captain Sardar Singh or Indian hockey legend Anup Kumar or Indian luge hero Shiva Keshavan — hung up their boots in 2018.
Elsewhere, long-standing associations ended, like Arsene Wenger walking away from Arsenal or Fernando Alonso quitting Formula 1.
The year also saw some memorable comebacks, from Tiger Woods finally winning a tournament to Novak Djokovic's rise from World No 22 to World No 1.
Here's a handy list of the retirements, the comebacks and the long-standing associations which ended in 2018:
It was perhaps the most surreal moment in golf in 2018. After some near-misses, Tiger Woods finally won a tournament since 2013 even as thousands followed him to the 18th green at the TOUR Championships.
Crazy scenes around the 18th green as Tiger Woods win the Tour Championship. Crowd chanting 'Tiger, Tiger, Tiger' and 'USA, USA, USA'pic.twitter.com/lFwUg0i2AB
— Francis Keogh (@HonestFrank) September 23, 2018
Billy Monger had a horror crash in British Formula 4 last year which led to both his legs being amputated. This year, he made a comeback to motorsport, this time in British Formula 3. The 19-year-old even claimed pole position at Donington Park but could not replicate that during the main race in September.
It's been a remarkable 2018 for @BillyMonger
On Sunday, he was honoured with the BBC Sports Personality of the Year's Helen Rollason Award, for outstanding achievement in the face of adversity. We can't think of a more deserving winner #SPOTY #BillyWhizz pic.twitter.com/rk9xbSUaSp
— Formula 1 (@F1) December 17, 2018
Having undergone surgery on his elbow after the Australian Open, Novak Djokovic’s ranking slumped to 22 at one point. But he ended the season as World No 1, having won Wimbledon and the US Open in 2018.
How did @DjokerNole get from No. 22 to No. 1?
See his incredible season unfold pic.twitter.com/kusT1P3pRv
— Tennis Channel (@TennisChannel) November 5, 2018
When Andres Iniesta said goodbye to Barcelona
This photo of @andresiniesta8 was taken at 1.30am - after all the hoopla, post match
celebrations and plaudits - after everyone had gone home (and many had gone to bed) Iniesta in his bare feet went out onto the Nou Camp pitch and sat alone to reflect quietly pic.twitter.com/MJJ8zbjig4
— Joe Morrison (@joefooty) May 21, 2018
Arsene Wenger bid adieu to Arsenal, ending a 22-year association with the London club
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) May 8, 2018
Luger Shiva Keshavan hung up his sled after having participated in a record six Winter Olympics
.@100thofasec thank you so much for everything. We are proud of you, always.
Here comes one more
video from a fan.@olympicchannel @pyeongchang2018 @Olympics @Tiya28 @worldolympians @IndianOlympians#Shiv6 #ShivaKeshavan #Olympics #PyeongChang2018 #WinterOlympics2018 #luge pic.twitter.com/N4CHgOgc5b
— SportWise India (@SportWiseIndia) February 10, 2018
Fernando Alonso said goodbye to Formula 1
— Formula 1 (@F1) November 25, 2018
Former India kabaddi captain Anup Kumar called time on his career
The day I took to playing Kabaddi professionally,I had one dream, to represent my country and bring back a gold medal,I am one of the few lucky people who had the opportunity to accomplish the most important dream of my life. pic.twitter.com/ddkTZhFJaf
— Anup Kumar (@IamAnupK) December 23, 2018
Indian legend Sardar Singh ended his international hockey career
— Hockey India (@TheHockeyIndia) September 14, 2018
Alastair Cook hung up his bat
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) September 12, 2018
South African cricket legend Ab de Villiers stepped aside
I’ve made a big decision today pic.twitter.com/In0jyquPOK
— AB de Villiers (@ABdeVilliers17) May 23, 2018
All players heading to Australia for the opening major of the year in January must be vaccinated against Covid, casting doubt on whether the Serbian world number one will play.
Djokovic was hoping to draw level with Roger Federer on six season-ending championship titles.
One week on from arguably his toughest and greatest win in Brazil, Hamilton enjoyed one of his easiest.