• March 13 down the years

A controversial draw in boxing

March 13 down the years
Evander Holyfield and Lennox Lewis could not be seperated by the judges © Getty Images
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1999
A draw never goes down well in boxing. You never hear a boxer saying 'yup that was a fair result'. Same today, when Evander Holyfield and Lennox Lewis tried to unify a few heavyweight titles. Holyfield was WBA and IBF champion, Lewis WBC. After tonight's fight, they still were. Two judges were split, and Lewis didn't thank Britain's Larry O'Connell for scoring it a draw. The two boxers had another go in November, and this time Lewis won unanimously. His record looked good in parts, but it was littered with shot fighters like Mike Tyson or old men like Holyfield, who was 37 by then.

2010
Jessica Ennis added World Indoor pentathlon gold to the world heptathlon title she won the previous year with a supreme performance in Doha, taking the title in a championship record of 4437. And Dwain Chambers made it a double celebration for British athletics with victory in the 60 Metres - clocking a time of 6.48 seconds.

1948
Ireland's only Grand Slam at rugby before March 21, 2009. They took the lead in Belfast when a miss-pass by Jack Kyle made a try for left wing Barney Mullan, who missed the difficult conversion and three penalty kicks. Wales equalised with a typical sidestepping run by their brilliant centre Bleddyn Williams. But their backs were disrupted by the famous Irish back row of Jim McCarthy, Des O'Brien, and Bill McKay. And it was another forward who seized the moment. Two minutes into the second half, a high kick led to a loose ball, and prop Chris Daly dived on it when Wales missed the chance to touch down. For the rest of the game, Kyle and his forwards kept Wales penned in their own half. After the match, Daly was carried shoulder-high minus his shirt, which had been shredded by supporters. He switched to rugby league later that year, so this was his last match for Ireland. Worse ways to go.

1994
In athletics, the European Indoor Championships ended. The day before, Colin Jackson had won the 60 metres. Today he completed a unique double by winning the hurdles over the same distance. Meanwhile Du'aine Ladejo won the 400, Dalton Grant the high jump, and David Strang was a surprise 1500 metre champion.

British athletes won three events at the European Indoors back in 1977, including both 800 metres races. Jane Colebrook sprinted to victory after reaching the Final as a fastest loser, and Seb Coe led from the start. Mary Stewart won the 1500 metres in a time close to her own world record. There was no need for heats in her event: only five runners entered! Stewart's brothers also won European Indoor titles, both in the 3,000 metres: Ian in 1969 and 1975, Peter in 1971.

At those 1977 Championships, Viktor Saneyev won the triple jump for the sixth time - but Valery Borzov trumped that by winning his last 60 metres title. He's the only male athlete to win the same European Indoor event seven times.

2010
Jessica Ennis added World Indoor Pentathlon Gold to the world title she won last year with a supreme performance in Doha. Ennis made the perfect start to the five-event competition with a time of 8.04 seconds in the 60 Metres Hurdles and never looked back as she set a championship record of 4437 points. Dwain Chambers made it a double celebration for British athletics with victory in the 60 Metres.

1969
One of the funniest title fights - if you weren't Henry Cooper. Here in Rome, he defended his European heavyweight championship against Pietro Tomasoni. You could say Tomasoni had his eyes on 'Enery's belt - because he hit him below it several times. Low blows put Cooper on the floor twice. It took the referee a while to warn Tomasoni; when he did, the crowd pelted the ring with paper cups, programmes, and a waste of good ice cream. Thankfully Cooper put an end to the nonsense with a trademark left hook in the fifth. Afterwards, he showed reporters his protective cup. It was concave! Tomasoni lost two fights for the Italian heavyweight title, then retired at the end of the year.

1976
Bernie Ford won his first National Cross-Country title after finishing second for the last two years. The mantelpiece had a pair of bookends now: his wife Ann had won the women's title earlier in the year. Most of the country's top cross-country runners didn't take part, including former champions David Black and Tony Simmons. Ford: 'It didn't mean anything, quite honestly'. Still, he beat Dave Moorcroft by 13 seconds. He regained the title on March 4, 1978.

Ronnie O'Sullivan has raised the bar in snooker © Getty Images
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1991
Ronnie O'Sullivan became the youngest player make a 147 maximum in competition. It happened in the Southern Area quarter-finals of the English Amateur Championship when he was 15 years 97 days old.

The Rocket's record was broken on the same day in 2004, by Judd Trump (a star's name if ever there was one) against Chris Peach (ditto) in an Under-16 tournament. Trump was 14 years 197 days old.

1993
In her debut at the World Championships, 15-year-old Ukrainian ice skater Oksana Baiul won the women's individual title. She landed five triple jumps to the seven by Surya Bonaly of France, but athleticism isn't everything. Bonaly also finished second in each of the next two years and never won the title. Baiul's poise and lightness of movement won the judges over. For the first time since 1964, the USA didn't win a medal at the Championships. At the Olympics next year, Baiul stole the Kerrigan-Harding show.

1961
Patterson v Johansson III. Ingemar Johansson won the world heavyweight title by knocking down Floyd Patterson seven times. Patterson won it back from him with a fifth-round knockout. This was the decider, and it followed a similar pattern. Big punches and poor defence. Floyd went down twice in the first round, and that seemed to be that. But he got in a knockdown of his own before the round was over - then it soon became clear that Johansson's mind had been on other things. He weighed ten pounds more than in their previous fights, and it looked like he'd been training on blondes. He was puffing and blowing before the knockout punch in the sixth. The fights with Patterson were the only ones he lost as a pro.

1907
Jack Holden was born in the West Midlands. A good enough runner to win AAA titles at six and ten miles in the 1930s (including both in one year), he had some great Indian summers after the War. Moving up to the Marathon, he finished down the field at the 1948 Olympics in London, and that seemed to be the end of his career. After all, he was already 41. But Holden didn't believe in the important thing being the taking part. Two years later, he won his fourth consecutive AAA Marathon and became the oldest ever gold medallist at both the Commonwealth Games and the European Championships. That relentless running came in useful at cross-country: before the War, he won the National three years in a row and became the first runner to win the International (now the World Championships) four times. He died in 2004 just before his 97th birthday.

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