Every coin has two sides. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Similarly, the hugely followed sport is not always fun and exciting. Some events depicting poor sportsmanship disgraces these beautiful and much-loved games.Very much like the good memories, even these disgracing events stay alive in the minds of sports lovers for a long time. So here's my compilation of the 5 most disgraceful events in sports.
#5 Monica Seles getting stabbed
Monica Seles was a pro Tennis player, a former World no.1 from Yugoslavia and an inductee into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Seles had a terrific run bagging a Grand Slam singles title before she was even 20. She is the youngest French Open Champion at the age of 16. Experts around the world were convinced that she would be the ‘next big thing’ in tennis.
But things took an unfortunate turn for Seles. On April 30, 1993, she was the victim of an on-court attack, when a man stabbed her in the back with a 9-inch (23 cm) long knife. She was in the middle a quarterfinal match with Magdalena Maleeva in Hamburg in which Seles was leading 6–4, 4–3 until Günter Parche, an obsessed fan of Steffi Graf, came out from the middle of the crowd, ran towards the edge of the court during a break between games and stabbed Seles.
She was not able to cope up with this traumatic incident causing her to lose two years at a time when she was on the top of her game.
She did make a return, but her post-accident run was no way near to the terrific run she had earlier. Even though she did manage to win the Australian Open in 1996, she never regained her best form again. She finally retired in February 2008. This unwanted incident surely was an upset in the history of professional tennis.
A player who could have probably become one of the greatest of the game was thrown off-the-tracks in her prime.
#4 Marion Jones doping incident
Jones is one of the renowned names in the track and field sports. Born in America, she is a former World Champion and a winner of three Summer Olympic medals in Sydney, Australia in 2000.
But one day, Victor Conte, the founder of Balco, revealed a shocking secret. In an interview which had national coverage, he stated the fact that he provided Jones with 5 illegal performance-enhancing drugs. When a series of investigations began, many things came in the limelight and some athletes were even ready to testify against Jones.
Initially,Jones denied all charges but later she accepted them. She was sentenced to 6 months in prison and was stripped off from all her medals, points, prizes and results whatever she won after September 1, 2000.
#3 Bob Woolmer\'s death
The shocking demise of the Pakistan's cricket team coach, Bob Woolmer was a black event in the history of cricket. The tragic event happened a day after Pakistan were knocked out of Cricket's showpiece event in 2007. They were handed an unexpected defeat at the hands of the much low ranked Ireland team. This win has two sides. On one side, the Irish camp was delighted with the win, but the very next day, everything changed. The cricketing family lost one of its cherished members.
A day after the win, Bob Woolmer was found dead in the washroom of his hotel room. He had blood in his mouth that showed signs of vomiting. He was on medication for diabetes. Such deaths are less than rare in sports and so this event gripped the whole world.
Whether it was a suicide, death from natural causes or a murder is a mystery to everyone. It still remains an open wound of the 2007 World Cup.
#2 Lance Armstrong\'s stunning disclosure
Lance born on the 18th of September 1971 in Plano, Texas is a pro-American cyclist who won seven Tour de France titles between 1999-2005. Till not long ago, many saw him as an idol, a testicular cancer survivor and surely one of the greatest, most respected athletes in sports. But that perception took a major hit.
For almost a decade, Armstrong was under speculation that he used performance-enhancing drugs during those seven years. In June 2012, the case took a turn when the US Anti -doping agency brought formal charges against him. In July, things heated up when four of Armstrong's former teammates, who were a part of the 2012 Tour de France, agreed to testify against him.
Armstrong, initially, denied all charges but later in January 2013, when the proofs were uncovered, he accepted them.
This revelation broke uncountable hearts. Many lost an idol and the world lost a legend.
#1 The disgrace of Gijon
Thinking about some not-so-good memories in football, this name pops out first. This happened in the 1982 FIFA World Cup in Spain. At that time, the football team of West Germany was a dominant force in the world. Before entering this most followed event, they had cruised through the qualification rounds and were even the champions of UEFA Euro Cup 1980.
Now a detail of what happened. West Germany had their first match against Algeria, a team which they felt could beat even if they are half asleep. The Germans were quite vocal about this. They boasted with remarks like "We will dedicate our 7th goal to our wives and our 8th goal to our dogs." But there was a surprise in store for Algeria and a shock for the West Germans. The Algerians played out of their skins handing a silent powerful reply ( a 2-1 win) over West Germany.
Austria and Chile were the two other teams in the group. West Germany bounced back crushing Chile 4-1 whereas Algeria lost 0-2 to Austria. And then the Algerians came back and defeated Chile 3-2.
The last match of the group was between West Germany and Austria. As per the table, for Algeria to qualify any one of the following results had to happen-
1- West Germany wins by three goals or more,
2- A draw, or
3- An Austrian win
Everyone expected a close contest, but the exact opposite happened. It was such a dull match and West Germany's Horst Hrubesch scored a goal in the 11th minute and then both the sides didn't make any valid effort to score. A 1-0 win for West Germany would have made both the teams advance to the next round leaving Algeria behind.
There are no concrete proofs as to this was done intentionally or not but what was evident on the field made things pretty clear. This was a shameful event presenting a poor example of sportsmanship.
After this event, every last two group matches of subsequent World Cups are played simultaneously so no team can prior decide their line of action.