Australian Sporting Highlights in 2016

The year 2016 was another year of highs and low in sports for Australian athletes. At the pinnacle of world sports, the Rio Olympics, Australia finished in a lower than expected 10th position on the medal table with a total of 29 medals (8 gold, 11 silver, and 10 bronze), Australia's worst result since the 1992 Olympics. Highlight performances were the win by the women's rugby 7s team, and Chloe Esposito's surprise gold in modern pentathlon.

34-year-old Australian basketball player Lauren Jackson announced her retirement, after an illustrious career which saw her star for the WNBA's Seattle Storm, winning WNBA's most valuable player three times, and leading Australia to four Olympic medals.

In golf, The world's no.1 Jason Day fell agonisingly short of defending his PGA Championship title in a thrilling finish to the final round where he shot an eagle on the last, leaving him 1 stroke behind the winner.

The Australian women's cricket team finished runners up in the women's T20 World Cup held in India. The defending champions were defeated by the West Indies in the final.

An AFL women's league was announced, with a huge TV audience for a demonstration game, with the competition to start early in 2017.

Basketballer Ben Simmons was selected by the Philadelphia 76ers with the No.1 overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft, the second Aussie to do so after Andrew Bogut in 2005.

The AFL team Essendon's drug scandal came to an end with the players receiving a significant ban for all of 2016.

Significant sporting deaths this year included:

The highest paid Australian athlete was golfer Jason Day, who was 69th on the Forbes highest earners list with $23.6 million in earnings in 2016.

The 2016 Don Award, which recognises the sporting achievement of the year which has inspired the people of Australia, was awarded to female jockey Michelle Payne.

Here are details about some of the major sporting events in 2016 from Australia and abroad, with information relevant to Australians.

Date(s) Sport Event Location Results
Jan 18-31 Tennis Australia Open Melbourne, Australia No Australians made the quarter finals in either the mens or women's draw.
Jan 28–31 Extreme Sports Winter X Games 20 Aspen, Colorado, USA Australia won one gold, through Jarryd Hughes in the Men's Snowboarder X, finishing 4th on the medal table.
Mar 2-6 Cycling World Track Championships London, UK Australia finishing 4rd on the medal table with 2 gold, the men's team pursuit and and Rebecca Wiasak in the individual pursuit.
Mar 8-Apr 3 Cricket ICC World Twenty20 India Australia failed to get past the Super 10 phase
Apr 7-10 Golf Masters Augusta, USA The best placed Aussie was Jason Day, finishing equal 10th at 1 over.
May 1 Soccer A-League Adelaide Oval, South Australia. Adelaide United won its first A-league championship, beating the Western Sydney Wanderers 3-1 in the Grand Final in front of a crowd of 50,119.
May 8-12 Multi-sports Invictus Games Orlando, Florida, USA 15 countries participated, including Australia
May 22-Jun 5 Tennis French Open Paris, France The best performing Australia was Samantha Stosur who made the semi-final
Jun 2-19 Basketball NBA Finals USA/Canada The Cleveland Cavaliers versus Golden State Warriors rematch from last year also featured Australians Andrew Bogut and Matthew Dellavedova.
Jun 16-19 Golf US Open Oakmont CC, Oakmont, Pennsylvania Jason Day finished equal 8th at 2 over
Jun 27-Jul 10 Tennis Wimbledon London, England No Australians made the quarter finals in either the mens or women's draw.
July 2-24 Cycling 2016 Tour de France France Adam Yates of Australian team Orica-BikeExchange finished 4th. Australian Richie Porte (riding for BMC Racing) finished in fifth place.
July 14-17 Golf British Open Royal Troon Golf Club, Ayrshire, Scotland 11 Australians were in the field
July 28–31 Golf US PGA Baltusrol (Lower Course), Springfield, New Jersey

The world's no.1 Jason Day finished 1 stroke behind the winner.

Aug 5-21 Multi-sports Summer Olympics Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Australia finished in 10th position on the medal table with a total of 29 medals (8 gold, 11 silver, and 10 bronze)
Aug 21-28 Rowing World Rowing Championships Rotterdam Netherlands Australia did not win a medal
Aug 29-Sep 11 Tennis US Open New York, USA No Australians made the quarter finals in either the mens or women's draw.
Sep 3-11 Baseball Women's Baseball World Cup Gijang, South Korea Australia finished 5th.
Sep 7-18 Multi-sports Paralympic Games Rio, Brazil Australia finished 5th on the medal table.
Oct 1 AFL Grand Final Melbourne, Australia the Western Bulldogs appeared in their first Grand Final since 1961, beating the Sydney Swans by 22 points. The bulldogs won three consecutive finals from a record seventh position on the ladder to progress through to the Grand Final.
Oct 9-16 Cycling UCI Road World Championships Doha, Qatar Australia finished 11th on the medal table with three bronze.
Nov 1 Horse Racing Melbourne Cup Victoria, Australia Almandin produced a strong late run to catch Heartbreak City in the final strides and win by a head.
Dec 7-11 Swimming FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) Windsor, Canada Australia finished 9th on the medal table with 2 golds; Mitch Larkin in the 100 m backstroke and Brittany Elmslie in the 100 m freestyle.

If you have correction or know of events that should be included here, please let me know. Do you have a comment? Make it below.

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