On This Day

Sports Stars Born in 1939

  • Jan 1 Phil Read, MBE, English motorcycle road racer (first winner world championships in 125cc [1968], 250cc [1964-65, 68, 71] and 500 cc [1973-74] classes), born in Luton, England

Bobby Hull

Jan 3 Bobby Hull, Canadian Hockey Hall of Fame left wing (Art Ross Trophy 1960, 62, 66; Hart Memorial Trophy 1965, 66), born in Pointe Anne, Ontario

  • Jan 3 Nikos Alefantos, Greek soccer midfielder and manager (Olympiacos), born in Edessa, Greece (d. 2020)
  • Jan 4 Jens Jørgen Hansen, Danish soccer right back (40 caps; Esbjerg fB), born in Struer, Denmark (d, 2022)
  • Jan 5 Bridget Parker, British equestrian 3 day event (Olympic gold 1972)
  • Jan 6 Murray Rose, Australian Olympic swimmer (4x oly gold), born in Birmingham, United Kingdom (d. 2012)
  • Jan 7 Tom Kierman, Irish rugby player, born in Cork, Ireland
  • Jan 7 Tom Kiernan, Irish rugby union fullback (54 caps [captain 24]; British & Irish Lions 5 [captain 1968]; Munster RUFC), born in Cork, Ireland (d. 2022)
  • Jan 8 Bob Talamini, American football guard (Super Bowl 1968 NY Jets; 3 × First-team All-AFL; 6 × AFL All-Star; Houston Oilers), born in Louisville, Kentucky (d. 2022)
  • Jan 10 Bill Toomey, American decathlete (Olympic gold 1968), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Jan 10 Davie Wilson, Scottish soccer forward (22 caps; Rangers, Dundee United) and manager (Dumbarton), born in Cambuslang, Scotland (d. 2022)
  • Jan 11 Anne Heggtveit, Canadian alpine skier (Olympic gold 1960), born in Ottawa, Ontario
  • Jan 13 Jacek Gmoch, Polish footballer and coach
  • Jan 14 Fred Arbanas, American football tight end (All-AFL 1962–67; Super Bowl 1970; Dallas Texans / Kansas City Chiefs), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 2021)
  • Jan 15 Tony Bullimore, British yachtsman (1997 solo around-the-world yacht race, dramatic rescue), born in Southend-on-Sea, England (d. 2018) [1]
  • Jan 17 Antao D'Souza, Pakistani cricket medium pace bowler (6 Tests, 17 wickets; Karachi, Peshawar), born in Nagoa, Goa, India
  • Jan 17 Toini Gustafson, Swedish 5K/10K cross country skier (Olympic gold 1968)
  • Jan 20 Murle Breer, American golfer (US Women's Open 1962), born in St. Petersburg, Florida
  • Jan 22 Luigi Simoni, Italian soccer midfielder (Napoli, Torino, Juventus, Brescia, Genoa) and manager (UEFA Cup 1998, Inter; Genoa, Torino, Napoli), born in Crevalcore, Italy (d. 2020)
  • Jan 27 Mike Hill, American golfer (3 PGA; PGA 18 Senior titles), born in Jackson, Michigan
  • Jan 31 Johnny Egan, American basketball point guard (Detroit Pistons, NY Knicks, Baltimore Bullets, LA Lakers, SD/Houston Rockets) and coach (Houston Rockets 1973-76), born in Hartford, Connecticut (d. 2022)
  • Feb 5 Brian Luckhurst, cricketer (England opener of 60's & early 70's)
  • Feb 18 Dal Maxvill, American baseball player
  • Feb 19 Douglas Mitchell, Canadian Football Hall of Fame executive (CFL Commissioner 1984-88), born in Calgary, Alberta (d. 2022)
  • Feb 20 Frank Arundel, English footballer
  • Feb 22 Steve Barber, American MLB pitcher (Baltimore Orioles, NY Yankees), born in Takoma Park, Maryland (d. 2007)
  • Feb 23 Josef Feistmantl, Austrian lugeist (Olympic gold 1964)
  • Feb 27 Lester King, West Indian cricketer (WI fast bowler, 2 Tests 1962-68, 9 wkts), born in St Catherine, Jamaica
  • Feb 27 Peter Revson, American auto racer (Indianapolis 500 1971 pole winner, runner-up), born in New York City (d. 1974)
  • Feb 28 Charles Brown, featherweight boxer (Olympic bronze 1964), born in Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Feb 28 Kamel Lemoui, Algerian soccer defender (7 caps; AS Béziers Hérault) and manager (Algeria 1988-89), born in Batna, Algeria (d. 2022)
  • Mar 3 M L Jaisimha, cricketer (Indian batsman of the sixties)

Jack Fisher

Mar 4 Jack Fisher, American MLB Pitcher, born in Frostburg, Maryland

  • Mar 6 Cookie Rojas, baseball player
  • Mar 7 Panajot Pano, Albanian football star known as the "The little Puskás", born in Durrës, Albania (d. 2010)

Jim Bouton

Mar 8 Jim Bouton, American baseball pitcher, author and broadcaster (NY Yankees, MLB All Star 1968, "Ball Four"), born in Newark, New Jersey (d. 2019)

  • Mar 8 Lydia Skoblikova, USSR, speed skater (Olympics-6 gold-1960, 64)
  • Mar 10 Irina Press, Soviet 80m hurdles runner and pentathlete (Olympic gold 1960, 64), born in Kharkiv, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union (d. 2004)
  • Mar 10 Len Ashurst, English soccer defender (Sunderland AFC 409 games) and manager (Cardiff City, Sunderland, Newport County), born in Liverpool, England (d. 2021)
  • Mar 12 John Paul Sr, Dutch-American auto racer (24 Hours of Le Mans 1978; 24 Hours of Daytona 1982; 12 Hours of Sebring 1982), born in Netherlands (disappeared 2001)
  • Mar 17 Shahid Mahmoud, Pakistani cricketer (opener scored 16 & 9 in only Pak Test)

Robin Knox-Johnston

Mar 17 Robin Knox-Johnston, British yachtsman who completed the 1st single non-stop circumnavigation of the globe in 1969, born in London, England

  • Mar 18 Ron Atkinson, English soccer wing half, manager (Oxford United, Manchester United, Sheffield Wed, Aston Villa), born in Liverpool, England
  • Mar 19 Abbas Ali Baig, cricketer (Indian bat 112 on debut v England 1959)
  • Mar 19 Joe Kapp, NFL quarterback (Minnesota Vikings, Boston Patriots, Houston Oilers)
  • Mar 19 Peter Thorburn MNZM, New Zealand rugby union coach (North Harbour, NZ sevens, Bristol RFC, United States), born in Auckland, New Zealand (d. 2021)
  • Mar 20 Kevin Flynn, Irish rugby union centre (22 caps; Leinster RFC), born in Dublin, Ireland (d. 2022)
  • Mar 21 Martha Hudson, Eastman Ga, 4X100m relayer (Olympic gold 1960)
  • Mar 21 Tommy Davis, American baseball utility (3 x MLB All Star; World Series 1963; NL batting champion 1962, 63 LA Dodgers), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2022)
  • Mar 27 Cale Yarborough, American auto racer (Daytona 500-1968, 77, 83, 84), born in Timmonsville, South Carolina
  • Mar 27 Maurice Petty, American auto racing crew chief, engine builder and team owner (Petty Enterprises, International Motorsports & NASCAR Hall of Fame), born in Level Cross, North Carolina (d. 2020)
  • Mar 29 Hanumant Singh, Indian cricketer (14 Tests for India-century on debut), born in Banswara, India
  • Mar 30 Robert Herbin, French soccer defender (23 caps; Saint-Étienne) and manager (Saint-Étienne, Lyon, Strasbourg), born in Paris, France (d. 2020)

Phil Niekro

Apr 1 Phil Niekro, American Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher, famed knuckleballer; no-hitter 1973; 5 x MLB All Star; 5 x Gold Glove; Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves), born in Blaine, Ohio (d. 2020)

  • Apr 1 Nick Peters, American Baseball Hall of Fame writer (Oakland Tribune, Sacramento Bee, Berkeley Gazette, San Francisco Chronicle), born in San Francisco, California (d. 2015)
  • Apr 1 Vitali Davydov, Russian ice hockey defenceman (Olympic gold 1964, 68, 72; HC Dynamo Moscow), born in Moscow, Russia
  • Apr 3 Vitaliy Davidov, Soviet ice hockey player (Olympic gold 1964, 68, 72), born in Moscow
  • Apr 4 JoAnne Carner, American golfer (US Women's Open 1971, 76), born in Kirkland, Washington
  • Apr 4 Ernie Terrell, American boxer (WBA heavyweight champion 1965-7), born in Belzoni, Mississippi (d. 2014)
  • Apr 6 Eugeniusz Faber, Polish soccer forward (36 caps; Ruch Chorzów, Lens), born in Chorzów, Poland (d. 2021)
  • Apr 12 Johnny Raper, Australian rugby league lock (33 Tests, 6 World Cup games; Newtown RLFC, St. George RLFC; Inaugural RL "Immortal") and coach (St. George, RLFC, Cronulla RLFC), born in Sydney, Australia (d. 2022)
  • Apr 18 Von McDaniel, American baseball player, born in Hollis, Oklahoma (d. 1995)
  • Apr 19 Michael Macaulay, South African cricketer (Tvl, W Prov, OFS, NE Tvl, E Prov & S Afr), born in Durban, Natal
  • Apr 22 Yury Sharov, Russian fencer (Olympic gold Soviet Union, team foil 1964, silver 1968), born in Saratov, Russia (d. 2021)
  • Apr 25 Tarcisio Burgnich, Italian soccer defender (66 caps; Internazionale 358 games) and manager (Como, Genoa), born in Ruda, Italy (d. 2021)
  • May 1 Frank Beard, American golfer (11 PGA Tour titles; US Open 1965, 75 3rd), born in Dallas, Texas
  • May 2 Gates Brown, American MLB outfielder (Detroit Tigers: 1963-75), born in Crestline, Ohio (d. 2013)
  • May 5 Cesare Fiorio, Italian sporting director of various Formula One teams, born in Turin, Italy
  • May 8 Paul Drayton, American athlete (Olympic gold 4x100m relay 1964), born in Glen Cove, New York (d. 2010)
  • May 8 János Göröcs, Hungarian soccer midfielder (62 caps; Újpesti Dózsa, Tatabányai Bányász), born in Gánt, Hungary (d. 2020)
  • May 9 Herbert Hippauf, baseball player
  • May 9 Ralph Boston, American long jumper (Olympic gold 1960; first to break 27 feet [8.2m] barrier), born in Laurel, Mississippi
  • May 9 Ion Ţiriac, Romanian tennis manager
  • May 11 Milt Pappas, American baseball pitcher, (3-time MLB All Star), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 2016)
  • May 12 Reg Gasnier, Australian Rugby League Hall of Fame centre and captain (36 Tests; 3 World Cups; St. George RLFC), born in Sydney, Australia (d. 2014)
  • May 13 Hildrun Laufer-Claus, German long jumper, born in Dresden, Germany
  • May 15 Dudley Wysong, American golfer (PGA C'ship 1966 runner-up), born in McKinney, Texas (d. 1998)
  • May 18 Neil McCarthy, American college basketball coach (Weber State Uni 1974-85, New Mexico State Uni 1985-97), born in San Francisco, California (d. 2021)
  • May 19 Livio Berruti, Italian athlete
  • May 19 Jānis Lūsis, Latvian athlete (Olympic gold men's javelin 1968, silver 1972, bronze 1968), born in Jelgava, Latvia (d. 2020)
  • May 21 Raúl Madero, Argentine soccer defender (5 caps; Estudiantes) and sports physician (Argentina national team), born in Buenos Aires, Argentina (d. 2021)
  • May 25 Gene A. Budig, American baseball executive (last American League [AL] president 1994-99), born in McCook, Nebraska (d. 2020)
  • May 26 Brent Musburger, American sportscaster (CBS Sports, The NFL Today; ESPN, ABC; VSiN; radio play-by-play Las Vegas Raiders), born in Portland, Oregon
  • May 29 Al Unser, American auto racer (Indianapolis 500 1970-71, 78, 87), born in Albuquerque, New Mexico (d. 2021)
  • May 30 Dieter Quester, Austrian racing driver, born in Vienna, Austria
  • Jun 3 Steve Dalkowski, American baseball player and inspiration for Bull Durham film, born in New Britain, Connecticut (d. 2020)
  • Jun 6 Doug Hart, American NFL defensive back (NFL champion 1965, 66, 67; Super Bowl 1967, 68; Green Bay Packers), born in Handley, Texas (d. 2020)
  • Jun 8 Herb Adderley, American Pro Football Hall of Fame cornerback (Super Bowl 1967-68, 71; Pro Bowl 1963–67; Green Bay Packers, Dallas Cowboys), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2020)
  • Jun 9 David Hobbs, British racing driver, born in Royal Leamington Spa, England
  • Jun 9 Dick Vitale, American basketball sportscaster (ESPN), born in Passaic, New Jersey

Jackie Stewart

Jun 11 Jackie Stewart, Scottish auto racer, analyst (27 Grand Prix wins, World F1 'ship 1969, 71, 73), born in Milton, Scotland

  • Jun 11 Rachel Heyhoe Flint, English cricket batter and captain (22 Tests, 23 ODOs; captain winning England team in inaugural Women's World Cup 1973), businesswoman and philanthropist, born in Wolverhampton, England (d. 2017)
  • Jun 12 Geoff Griffin, South African cricket fast bowler (2 Tests; first RSA Test hat-trick 1960), born in Greytown, Natal Province, South Africa (d. 2006)
  • Jun 13 Tom Cheek, American sportscaster (Voice of the Toronto Blue Jays), born in Pensacola, Florida (d. 2005)
  • Jun 14 Tom Matte, American football running back (Super Bowl 1971; Pro Bowl 1968, 69; NFL rushing TD leader 1969; Baltimore Colts), born in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania (d. 2021)
  • Jun 18 Lou Brock, American Baseball Hall of Fame outfielder (6 × MLB All-Star; World Series 1964, 67; 8 × NL stolen base leader; St Louis Cardinals), born in El Dorado, Arkansas (d. 2020)
  • Jun 20 Budge Rogers, British rugby player
  • Jun 20 Ramakant Desai, Indian cricket fast bowler (28 Tests, 74 wickets, 1 x 50; Bombay), born in Bombay, India (d. 1998)
  • Jun 22 Don Matthews, American football coach in the CFL
  • Jun 23 Charlie Spoonhour, American basketball coach (Southwest Missouri State, Saint Louis, UNLV), born in Mulberry, Kansas (d. 2012)
  • Jun 23 Bill Mahoney, Canadian ice hockey coach (NHL: Minnesota North Stars 1983-85), born in Peterborough, Ontario (d. 2021)
  • Jun 25 Allen Fox, American tennis player, born in Los Angeles, California
  • Jun 27 Neil Hawke, Australian cricket fast bowler (27 Tests, 91 wickets; South Australia CA), born in Adelaide, Australia (d. 2000)
  • Jun 29 Alan Connolly, Australian cricket fast bowler (29 Tests, 102 wickets; Victoria), born in Skipton, Australia
  • Jun 29 Ron Headley, West Indian cricket batsman (2 Tests; son of WI great George Headley; Worcestershire), born in Kingston, Jamaica
  • Jul 5 Booker Edgerson, American football player, born in Baxter County, Arkansas
  • Jul 6 Helena Dupont, American equestrian 3-day even (Olympic-33rd place-1964), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Jul 6 Man Mohan Sood, Indian cricketer (scored 0 & 3 in his only Test for India), born in Lahore, Punjab
  • Jul 6 Mary Peters, English pentathlete (Olympic gold 1972), born in Halewood, Lancashire
  • Jul 6 Renton Laidlaw, Scottish golf broadcaster and journalist (President Association of Golf Writers 1995-2015; BBC Radio), born in Edinburgh, Scotland (d. 2021)
  • Jul 11 Larry Laoretti, American golfer (US Senior Open 1992), born in Mahopac, New Jersey
  • Jul 15 Haseeb Ahsan, Pakistani cricket off-spinner (12 Tests 1958-62)
  • Jul 15 Don Kojis, American basketball forward (NBA All-Star 1968, 69; Detroit Pistons, SD Rockets, Seattle SuperSonics), born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (d. 2021)
  • Jul 18 Jerry Moore, American football player and coach, born in Bonham, Texas
  • Jul 24 Bob Lilly, NFL defensive tackle (Dallas Cowboys)
  • Jul 24 Walt Bellamy, American Basketball Hall of Fame center (NBA All-Star 1962–65; NBA Rookie of Year 1962; Olympic gold 1960), born in New Bern, North Carolina (d. 2013)
  • Jul 27 Irv Cross, American football cornerback (Pro Bowl 1964, 65; Philadelphia Eagles) and broadcaster (CBS), born in Hammond, Indiana (d. 2021)
  • Jul 31 Roger Prideaux, English cricketer (England batsman in 3 Tests 1968-69), born in Chelsea, London
  • Jul 31 Vic Davalillo, Venezuelan baseball outfielder (MLB All Star 1965; Gold Glove 1964), born in Cabimas, Venezuela
  • Jul 31 Norm Snead, American NFL quarterback (4-time Pro Bowl; Philadelphia Eagles), born in Halifax County, Virginia
  • Aug 8 Viorica Viscopoleanu, Romanian athlete (Olympic gold, long jump 1968), born in Storozhynets, Romania
  • Aug 9 Claude Osteen, American baseball pitcher (Cincinnati Reds), born in Caney Spring, Tennessee
  • Aug 9 Brito [Hércules de Brito Ruas], Brazilian footballer, born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Aug 12 Pam Ryan-Kilborn, Australia, hurdler (Olympic silver 1968)
  • Aug 18 Joe Azcue, Cuban baseball player, born in Cienfuegos, Cuba

Carl Yastrzemski

Aug 22 Carl Yastrzemski, American Baseball Hall of Fame left fielder, 1st baseman (18-time MLB All Star), born in Southampton, New York

  • Aug 24 Ray McLoughlin, Irish rugby union prop (40 caps Ireland, 3 British & Irish Lions; London Irish RFC), born in Ballinasloe, Ireland (d. 2021)
  • Sep 1 Heinrich Messner, Austrian downhill skier (winner first ever World Cup slalom; Olympic bronze 1968, 72), born in Obernberg am Brenner, Austria
  • Sep 5 Clay Regazzoni, Swiss Formula One driver, born in Mendrisio, Switzerland (d. 2006)
  • Sep 8 Carsten Keller, German field hockey player (Olympic gold 1972), born in Berlin
  • Sep 20 Ryszard Grzegorczyk, Polish soccer midfielder (23 caps; Polonia Bytom, RC Lens), born in Bytom, Poland (d. 2021)
  • Sep 23 Henry Blofeld, English cricket commentator

Kathy Whitworth

Sep 27 Kathy Whitworth, American golfer (7-time LPGA Player of Year, 6 major titles, record 88 LPGA Tour wins), born in Monahans, Texas

  • Sep 29 Jim Baxter, Scottish footballer (d. 2001)
  • Oct 1 George Archer, American golfer (US Masters 1969), born in San Francisco, California (d. 2005)
  • Oct 2 Budhi Kunderan, Indian cricket wicketkeeper and batsman (18 Tests; 2 x 100s), born in Mulki, Karnataka (d. 2006)
  • Oct 2 Özcan Arkoç, Turkish soccer goalkeeper (9 caps; Hamburger SV) and manager (Hamburger SV, Hannover 96), born in Hayrabolu, Turkey (d. 2021)
  • Oct 8 Elvīra Ozoliņa, Soviet javelin thrower (Olympic gold 1960), born in Leningrad

Maria Bueno

Oct 11 Maria Bueno, Brazilian tennis player (7 Grand Slam singles titles), born in São Paulo, Brazil (d. 2018)

  • Oct 15 Carmelo Bossi, Italian light middleweight boxer (Olympic silver 1960), born in Milan, Italy (d. 2014)
  • Oct 15 Willibert Kremer, German soccer coach (MSV Duisburg, Bayer Leverkusen, 1860 Munich, Fortuna Düsseldorf), born in Hochneukirch, Germany (d. 2021)

Mike Ditka

Oct 18 Mike Ditka, NFL coach and tight-end (Bears, Cowboys, NFL rookie year 1961), born in Carnegie, Pennsylvania

  • Oct 22 George Cohen, English soccer defender (37 caps; FIFA World Cup 1966; Fulham 459 games), born in London, England
  • Oct 25 Zelmo Beaty, American Basketball HOF center (2 × NBA All-Star; 3 × ABA All-Star; St Louis Hawks, Utah Stars, LA Lakers), born in Hillister, Texas (d. 2013)
  • Oct 28 Miroslav Cerar, Yugoslav gymnast (Olypmics gold 1964, 68), born in Ljubljana, Kingdom of Yugoslavia
  • Nov 2 Tom Thacker, American basketball forward (only player to play on NCAA, ABA and NBA C'ship teams), born in Covington, Kentucky
  • Nov 3 Frits Flinkevleugel, Dutch soccer defender (11 caps; DWS, FC Amsterdam), born in Amsterdam, Netherlands (d. 2020)
  • Nov 5 Kenneth Walter, South African cricket fast bowler (2 Tests, 6 wickets), born in Johannesburg, South Africa (d. 2003)
  • Nov 6 Pat Dye, American College Football Hall of Fame coach (East Carolina, Wyoming, Auburn; record 153–62–5), born in Blythe, Georgia (d. 2020)
  • Nov 11 Claudia Boyarskikh, Soviet cross country skier (5 Olympic gold 1964, 1968), born in Verkhnyaya Pyshma, Russia (d. 2009)
  • Nov 13 Karel Brückner, Czech football manager, born in Olomouc, Czech Republic
  • Nov 15 Erik Hansen, Danish canoeist (Olympic gold K-1 1000m 1960; World C'ship gold 1963), born in Randers, Denmark (d. 2014)
  • Nov 24 Jim Northrup, baseball player
  • Nov 24 Yoshinobu Miyake, Japan, featherweight (Olympic gold 1964, 68)
  • Nov 27 Dave Giusti, American baseball player (Pittsburgh Pirates), born in Seneca Falls, New York
  • Nov 29 Gennadi Volnov, Russian basketball player (Olympic gold 1972), born in Moscow, Soviet Union (d. 1998)
  • Dec 1 Lee Trevino, American golfer (British Open 1971-72; US Open 1968, 71; US PGA 1974, 84), born in Dallas, Texas
  • Dec 14 Ernie Davis, American College Football Hall of Fame halfback (1st African-American to win Heisman Trophy 1961, Syracuse), born in New Salem, Pennsylvania (d. 1963)
  • Dec 18 Sandro Lopopolo Italian lightweight boxer (Olympic-Silver-1960), born in Milan, Italy (d. 2014)
  • Dec 22 Valentin Afonin, Russian soccer defender (42 caps; SKA Rostov-on-Don, CSKA Moscow), born in Vladimir, Russia (d. 2021)
  • Dec 31 Afaq Hussain, Pakistani cricketer (Pakistani off-spinner in 2 Tests 1961-64), born in Lucknow, India (d. 2002)
  • Dec 31 Willye White, American athlete (Olympic silver long jump 1956, 4x100m relay 1964; Sports Illustrated 100 greatest women athletes of 20th century), born in Money, Mississippi (d. 2007)

About 1939

Chinese Zodiac: Tiger (Jan 1 - Feb 18), Rabbit (Feb 19 - Dec 31)