The Sportstar Aces Awards are back for a fifth chapter, seeking to honour incredible performances in sports across various disciplines.
Among the many Popular Choice honours open to public voting is the Moment of the Year award. Vote for your favourite sporting moment from 2022 to help your favourite players/teams win.
The nominees are:
- ⦿India lifts maiden Thomas Cup title
- ⦿Sharath Kamal wins men’s singles CWG gold after 16 years
- ⦿Virat Kohli’s heroics guide India to victory against Pakistan in the T20 World Cup
- ⦿Nikhat Zareen wins India’s first gold since 2018 at World Boxing Championships
- ⦿Avinash Sable breaks Kenyan Hegemony at Commonwealth Games
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Here’s a look at these standout moments from sports in 2022 in detail:
India lifts maiden Thomas Cup title
India became the sixth country in the world to lift the Thomas Cup on May 15 after crushing 14-time champion Indonesia 3-0 in the final at Bangkok. Lakshya Sen and Kidambi Srikanth won their singles matches and Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy won their doubles encounter to make it a convincing victory for India in a tournament that is seven decades old. It is one of India’s greatest achievements in sport, comparable to Neeraj Chopra’s gold at the Tokyo Olympics, Viswanathan Anand’s first World Chess Championship in 2000, the cricket team’s stunning victory at the 1983 World Cup, and the six successive gold medals in men’s hockey, from 1928 to 1956.
Sharath Kamal wins men’s singles CWG gold after 16 years
A great quality of an elite athlete, apart from the peaks and laurels, is longevity and the desire to maintain high standards. And one person who showed that even at 40 was Indian table tennis legend Sharath Kamal. Sharath had a dream Commonwealth Games, winning medals in every event he participated in. However, the crowning glory of his record haul of medals in Birmingham was when he defeated second seed Liam Pitchford 4-1 in the men’s singles final to clinch his second Commonwealth Games gold, 16 years after his first one back in 2006 at the Melbourne Games.
Virat Kohli’s heroics guide India to victory against Pakistan in the T20 World Cup
India’s batting superstar Virat Kohli played an innings to remember to guide India to a four-wicket win over archrival Pakistan in its T20 World Cup opener at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. With India reeling at 31 for 4 while chasing 160, Kohli held fort with a 43-ball fifty before teeing off in the final three overs to end with an unbeaten 53-ball 82. He struck Shaheen Afridi for three fours, laid into Haris Rauf for two consecutive sixes and displayed smarts under pressure in the final over by taking three runs after getting bowled off a free-hit to set up India’s thrilling win.
Nikhat Zareen wins India’s first gold since 2018 at World Boxing Championships
Nikhat Zareen became the sixth Indian – and the first since Mary Kom in 2018 – to win gold in the Women’s World Boxing Championships after beating Thai Jutamas Jitpong 5-0 in the 52kg final. Nikhat stamped her dominance by winning her four bouts before the final in the tournament by an identical 5-0 margin. Nikhat, a former world junior champion who braved hurdles both on and off the ring, went on to win the gold in the Commonwealth Games to complete a hat-trick of gold medals in 2022. She had won the gold at the Strandja Open in Bulgaria earlier in the year.
Here’s Nikhat Zareen’s story in the run-up to that Worlds triumph
Avinash Sable breaks Kenyan Hegemony at Commonwealth Games
Avinash Sable finally ended the Kenyan hegemony in the men’s 3,000m steeplechase at the Commonwealth Games – the East African nation had monopolised the CWG podium since 1998 – to win a silver medal with a time of 8:11.20 at the Alexander Stadium. Sable, who has been on a national record-breaking spree since the Federation Cup in March 2019, bettered his best performance for the ninth time, improving on his 8:12.48 achieved at the Rabat Diamond League in June this year. Sable, separated from gold medal winner - Kenya’s Abraham Kibiwot - by five microseconds, was disappointed at missing out on the chance to be at the top of the podium and hear the national anthem. One of the most endearing images from CWG 2022 will be of Sable, with the whole crowd behind him, nearly beating Kibiwot for the gold. But Sable, like always, wants to look at the bigger picture.
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