From Nou Camp to New England Patriots – 5 great sporting comebacks
England recovered to beat Australia in the second ODI while Dominic Thiem recovered from two sets down to win the US Open.
England snatched victory from the jaws of defeat to level their one-day international series against Australia while hours later Dominic Thiem produced a dogged fightback to overcome Alexander Zverev in the US Open final.
Having set a modest 232 at Emirates Old Trafford, England’s bowlers induced a collapse as Australia slipped from the comfort of 144 for two to 207 all out to lose by 24 runs and set up a series decider on Wednesday.
Across the pond, Thiem looked set to endure more grand slam final heartache after going two sets down in New York, but he rallied to prevail 2-6 4-6 6-4 6-3 7-6 (6) and finally gets his hands on one of the big four trophies.
Here, the PA news agency looks at five other great sporting recoveries.
Miracle at Medinah
The United States appeared to be cruising in the 2012 Ryder Cup after establishing a 10-4 lead over Europe in Saturday afternoon’s four-balls. And even though Ian Poulter reeled off five birdies in a row as he and Rory McIlroy edged out Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson to narrow the deficit to 10-6, the hosts were still in the driving seat. Instead Poulter’s efforts are fondly recalled as the start of a famous comeback as Europe won eight of the 12 Sunday singles matches. Martin Kaymer’s victory over Steve Stricker took Europe to the 14 points they needed to retain the crown while Tiger Woods’ bogey in the final hole of the match ensured a scarcely credible 14.5-13.5 win.
Miracle of Istanbul
When AC Milan went into half-time 3-0 up – with Paolo Maldini’s first-minute header added to by Hernan Crespo’s brace – in the 2005 Champions League final, not even the most optimistic Liverpool fan had any reason for hope. And yet, in the space of seven helter-skelter minutes, they were level before the hour mark as Steven Gerrard’s header, Vladimir Smicer’s long-range effort and Xabi Alonso putting in the rebound after missing a penalty left the Italian giants shell-shocked. Jerzy Dudek had a career-defining night by repelling everything Milan threw at him thereafter before saving from Andrea Pirlo and Andriy Shevchenko as Liverpool clinched a 3-2 penalty shootout victory.
United leave it late at Nou Camp
Six years earlier, United conjured their own miracle in Barcelona. Days after completing a domestic double, United flew to Spain seeking an unprecedented treble, with Sir Alex Ferguson desperate to get his hands on the one trophy he had never before touched. It seemed the dream would be over for another season following Mario Basler’s sixth-minute goal in a Champions League final Bayern Munich dominated. But the Bavarian club’s inability to extend their lead would spur on United, who equalised in the first minute of added-on time through Teddy Sheringham before fellow substitute Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wrote his name into club folklore with the winner moments later.
Brady and the Patriots bunch defy all odds
The Tom Brady-Bill Belichick axis had already delivered four Super Bowl triumphs for the New England Patriots heading into the 2017 showcase. The Falcons, meanwhile, had never prevailed on the grandest stage and this would have no fairytale ending despite Atlanta moving 28-3 ahead thanks to quarterback Matt Ryan’s second touchdown pass. The Patriots roared back and scored 25 unanswered points to level with 57 seconds left of regulation time. In overtime, a 75-yard drive was capped by James White scoring the winning touchdown as the Patriots recorded the third largest comeback in NFL play-offs history and the biggest in the Super Bowl.
Stokes masterclass downs Australia
The summer of 2019 was essentially the ‘Ben Stokes Show’. Just a few weeks after his star turn lifted England to World Cup glory, the Durham all-rounder produced an innings for the ages to level the Ashes at Headingley. A record 359 chase seemed fanciful after the hosts – blown away for 67 in their first innings – slipped to 286 for nine. Jack Leach contributed the most famous one not out but Stokes took centre stage, driving, cutting and pulling sumptuously before going into overdrive by reverse slog sweeping Nathan Lyon. His 135 not out evoked comparisons with Sir Ian Botham’s rescue act on the same ground against the same opponents 38 years earlier and although Australia regrouped to retain the urn, Stokes was the name on everyone’s lips.