There were so many fantastic photos throughout the year. Kudos to the amazing photographers who captured these special moments through their lenses, whether through thousand-dollar cameras or a smartphone. Here are my picks for the Top 12 Most Memorable Photos of the year:
Honorable Mention – Arrested Credentialment: If I didn’t know any better, I would think these three tennis stars were headed to prison. This is just a sampling of the credential photos for the London 2012 Olympics. Maybe next time, smile boys?
Honorable Mention – The Many Faces of Mr. Lendl: This image spread through the internet like wildfire and definitely gave me a good laugh. It certainly captures the essence of all (one) of Mr. Lendl’s expressions.
12. Winner’s Smile: This is Venus Williams after she lost to Aga Radwanska at the Sony Ericsson Open. Venus had entered Miami as a wildcard with a ranking of 134. She lost in the quarterfinals but her excellent week helped her re-break the top 100. As she left the court, she was smiling so wide – in defeat. That’s a win.
11. Celebrating Responsibly: After defeating his friend David Ferrer in a very tough Barcelona final, Rafael Nadal broke open a bottle of bubbly (and sprayed his friend with it!).
10. High-Flying Winner: After winning Wimbledon, Serena displayed her excitement through very high jumps in the air. I give it a perfect 10.
9. Bumping With Bob: It was Kim Clijster’s swan song at the US Open, so she partnered with Bob Bryan in mixed doubles to make the party last even longer. The two had a routine win in the first round and, on match point, Kim got to participate in one of the signature Bryan chest bumps. Bob said, of the bump, “It just happened. We had a good ending. She looked at me and I saw the look in her eyes, so I went for it. It was definitely a little softer on the impact.”
8. Buried Treasure: Roger Federer got buried in the sand during vacation. It’s unclear if the twins did it or one of his rivals.
7. Trophy baby: Micaela Bryan made her ATP debut when her daddy, Bob, and Uncle Mike won the Monte-Carlo Masters doubles title in the Spring. And she came dressed for the occasion.
6. Goodbye Kiss: Andy Roddick was defeated by David Ferrer in the third round of Wimbledon. As he exited the court, he turned to the crowd and blew them a kiss – an action many took as his goodbye to Wimbledon. And, in fact, it was.
5. Career Slam Celebration: Maria Sharapova defeated Sara Errani to win her first French Open title and become the 10th woman with a career Grand Slam. Her celebration epitomizes her accomplishment.
4. Incredible Hulkovic: It took Novak Djokovic 5 hours and 53 minutes to finally defeat Rafael Nadal 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7, 7-5 and win the Australian Open title. After that, wouldn’t you celebrate this way too?
3. Televised Twins: After Roger Federer won his 17th Grand Slam title at Wimbledon, his twin daughters, Myla Rose and Charlene Riva, truly stole the show. They were caught on camera and snapped up making hilariously adorable faces that only toddlers can get away with.
2. Good As Gold: It was way too hard for me to choose between these two pictures. On the left, Andy Murray’s leaving Centre Court after he clinched a spot in the London 2012 final. On the right, Andy had just celebrated with his box and was jumping back onto the court after clinching the gold medal. Both are fab photos, capturing such a golden moment.
1. Sports Pups Of The Year: Hard to argue against this as photo of the year. It has medals. It has dogs. What more could you ask for?
(Photos: Getty Images, US Open, Reuters, Troll Tennis, London 2012, Roger Federer, Telegraph, AP, Maggie Mayhem)