1979 in Sport

Events in Sport

Events 1 - 100 of 177

  • Jan 1 65th Rose Bowl: #3 Southern California beats #5 Michigan, 17-10
  • Jan 1 45th Sugar Bowl: #2 Alabama beats #1 Penn State, 14-7
  • Jan 1 45th Orange Bowl: #4 Oklahoma beats #6 Nebraska, 31-24

Sport awardTennis Open

Jan 3 67th Men's Australian Open: Guillermo Vilas beats John Marks (6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3)

Tennis Player and Four-Time Major Champion Guillermo Vilas
Tennis Player and Four-Time Major Champion
Guillermo Vilas
  • Jan 3 67th Women's Australian Open: Christine O'Neil beats Betsy Nagelsen (6-3, 7-6)
  • Jan 7 AFC Championship Game: Pittsburgh Steelers beat Houston Oilers 34-5
  • Jan 7 NFC Championship Game: Dallas Cowboys beat Los Angeles Rams 28-0

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 9 Bobby Orr's #4 jersey is retired by the Boston Bruins

Ice Hockey Legend Bobby Orr
Ice Hockey Legend
Bobby Orr
  • Jan 17 NY Islanders didn't get a shot off in 1 period against NY Rangers
  • Jan 21 Super Bowl XIII: Pittsburgh Steelers beat Dallas Cowboys, 35-31 in Miami Super Bowl MVP: Terry Bradshaw, Pittsburgh, QB

Hall of fameHall of Fame

Jan 23 Willie Mays elected to Baseball Hall of Fame

MLB Legend Willie Mays
MLB Legend
Willie Mays
  • Jan 27 Islanders ends 23 undefeated games at home streak (15-0-8)
  • Jan 29 NFL Pro Bowl: NFC beats AFC 13-7
  • Feb 3 Minnesota Twins trade Rod Carew to California for 4 players
  • Feb 4 Joanne Carner wins LPGA Colgate Triple Crown Golf Tournament
  • Feb 4 29th NBA All-Star Game: West beats East 134-129 at Pontiac, Michigan

  • Feb 9 UK Football club Nottingham Forest makes £1m transfer deal
  • Feb 10 Allan Border is named 12th man for Australia, only Test Cricket he misses
  • Feb 18 21st Daytona 500: Richard Petty wins (143.977 MPH)
  • Feb 21 2 Iowa girls HS basketball teams play 4 scoreless quarters game was won 4-2 in 4th overtime period
  • Feb 22 Billy Martin named manager of Oakland A's
  • Mar 3 26th ACC Men's Basketball Tournament: North Carolina beats Duke, 71-63
  • Mar 3 20th SEC Men's Basketball Tournament: Tennessee beats Kentucky, 75-69
  • Mar 4 Sally Little wins LPGA Bent Tree Golf Classic
  • Mar 7 Baseball exhibition season opens with semipro & amateur umpires
  • Mar 7 Warren Giles & Hack Wilson selected to baseball Hall of Fame
  • Mar 9 Bowie Kuhn orders baseball to give equal access to female reporters
  • Mar 11 Randy Hold receives 67 min in penalties in a 60 min NHL hockey game

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 13 Isle's Mike Bossy's 5th career hat trick

Ice Hockey Great Mike Bossy
Ice Hockey Great
Mike Bossy

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 15 Isle's Bryan Trottier's 5th career hat trick

NHL Star Bryan Trottier
NHL Star
Bryan Trottier
  • Mar 17 Ice Dance Championship at Vienna won by N Linichuk & G Karponosov USSR
  • Mar 22 NHL votes to accept 4 WHA teams (Oilers, Jets, Nordiques & Whalers)

Sport defeatBoxing Title Fight

Mar 23 Larry Holmes TKOs Osvaldo Ocasio in 7 for heavyweight boxing title

WBC Heavyweight Champion Larry Holmes
WBC Heavyweight Champion
Larry Holmes
  • Mar 24 1st appearance as Australian cricket captain for Kim Hughes

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 24 10 rebounds & 10 assists, as the Spartans cruise to a 101-67 by Penn Mich State's Earvin "Magic" Johnson registers triple-double 29 pts

NBA Legend Magic Johnson
NBA Legend
Magic Johnson
  • Mar 25 Czech tennis star Martina Navratilova retains her WTA Tour Championship with a 6–3, 3–6, 6–2 win over American teenager Tracey Austin in NYC
  • Mar 26 41st NCAA Men's Basketball Championship: Mich State beats Indiana St 75-64
  • Mar 26 Padres & Giants announce plans to play exhibition series in Tokyo but Giant players reject it
  • Mar 29 Delhi beats Karnataka by 399 runs to win Cricket's Ranji Trophy
  • Mar 29 Last day of Test cricket for Mushtaq Mohammad
  • Mar 31 133rd Grand National: Maurice Barnes aboard Rubstic wins

  • Apr 7 Houston Astro Ken Forsch no-hits Atlanta Braves, 6-0
  • Apr 7 Islander's Mike Bossy scores 4 goals against Flyers
  • Apr 8 8th Colgate Dinah Shore Golf Championship won by Sandra Post
  • Apr 10 J R Richard throws major league record 6 wild pitches in Astrodome
  • Apr 15 43rd Masters Golf Tournament: Fuzzy Zoeller wins, shooting a 280
  • Apr 16 83rd Boston Marathon: Bill Rodgers of United States 1st man in 2:09:27 and Joan Benoit of United States 1st woman in 2:35:15
  • May 2 -May 10] Vivekananda (Sri Lanka) begins nonstop ride, cycling 187 hrs, 28 min, around Vihara Maha Devi Park, Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • May 3 1979 NFL Draft: Tom Cousineau from Ohio State first pick by Buffalo Bills
  • May 4 Jackie Mercer wins her 4th golf title 31 years after her 1st
  • May 5 105th Kentucky Derby: Ron Franklin on Spectacular Bid wins in 2:02.4
  • May 6 Fred Markham set a bicycle speed record of 818 kph over 200 m
  • May 7 Gary Roenicke hits into Orioles 13th triple play (Oakland)
  • May 10 John McMullen becomes CEO of Houston Astros

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 12 Chris Evert's 125-match winning streak on clay comes to an end

Tennis Legend Chris Evert
Tennis Legend
Chris Evert
  • May 13 Sandra Post wins LPGA Lady Michelob Golf Tournament
  • May 16 FC Barcelona of Spain wins 19th European Cup Winner's Cup against Fortuna Düsseldorf of West Germany 4-3 in Basel
  • May 16 NL approves Astros sales from Ford Motors to John J McMullen for $19M
  • May 17 Phillies beat Cubs, 23-22, on 50 hits with 11 HRs
  • May 19 104th Preakness: Ron Franklin aboard Spectacular Bid wins in 1:54.2
  • May 21 Stanley Cup: Montreal Canadiens beat NY Rangers, 4 games to 1
  • May 23 1st edition of "Wisden Cricket Monthly"
  • May 24 Billy Martin issues a public apology to Reno sportswriter Ray Hagar
  • May 27 Penny Pulz wins LPGA Corning Golf Classic
  • May 27 Indianapolis 500: Rick Mears wins in 3:08:47.950 (255.723 km/h)
  • May 30 23rd European Cup: Nottingham Forest beats Malmo FF 1-0 at Munich
  • Jun 1 33rd NBA Championship: Sea Supersonics beat Wash Bullets, 4 games to 1
  • Jun 9 111th Belmont: Ruben Hernandez aboard Coastal wins in 2:28.6
  • Jun 9 Phillies wear burgundy uniforms for 1st and last time

Sport awardGolf Major

Jun 10 LPGA Championship, Jack Nicklaus GC: Donna Caponi Young wins 3rd major; beats Jerilyn Britz by 3 strokes

LPGA Golfer Donna Caponi
LPGA Golfer
Donna Caponi
  • Jun 10 Balt Orioles pull their 8th triple play (5-4-3 vs Cleve)

Sport awardTennis Open

Jun 11 French Open Men's Tennis: Björn Borg beats Victor Pecci 6-3, 6-1, 6-7, 6-4

Tennis Player Björn Borg
Tennis Player
Björn Borg
Tennis Player Victor Pecci
Tennis Player
Victor Pecci

Sports record brokenBaseball Event

Jun 12 Tigers fire manager Les Moss, hiring Sparky Anderson

MLB Player and Manager Sparky Anderson
MLB Player and Manager
Sparky Anderson
  • Jun 14 Canada all out for 45 runs in Cricket World Cup v England, in 40.3 overs
  • Jun 14 NY Giants Willie McCovey 513th HR is an NL lefty record

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jun 16 Carl Yastrzemski hits his 1,000th extra base hit

MLB Outfielder Carl Yastrzemski
MLB Outfielder
Carl Yastrzemski
  • Jun 17 79th US Golf Open: Hale Irwin shoots a 284 at Inverness Club in Toledo
  • Jun 18 Sri Lanka beat India by 47 runs in Cricket World Cup upset
  • Jun 19 In NYC 36,211 show up to witness return of Billy Martin as manager of the New York Yankees
  • Jun 22 Larry Holmes TKOs Mike Weaver in 12 for heavyweight boxing title
  • Jun 23 West Indies beat England by 92 runs to win Cricket World Cup

Sports record brokenBaseball Record

Jun 24 Rickey Henderson debuts for Oakland & steals his 1st base

MLB Outfielder Rickey Henderson
MLB Outfielder
Rickey Henderson

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jun 27 Heavyweight Muhammad Ali confirms that his 3rd retirement is final (it isn't)

Heavyweight Boxing Champion Muhammad Ali
Heavyweight Boxing Champion
Muhammad Ali
  • Jun 30 Davona Dale wins the Coaching Club American Oaks at Belmont to clinch American thoroughbred racing's Triple Tiara for fillies

Sport awardTennis Open

Jul 6 Wimbledon Women's Tennis: Martina Navratilova successfully defends her title beating Chris Evert Lloyd 6-4, 6-4

Tennis Player Martina Navratilova
Tennis Player
Martina Navratilova
Tennis Legend Chris Evert
Tennis Legend
Chris Evert
  • Jul 7 Wimbledon Men's Tennis: Björn Borg beats American Roscoe Tanner 6-7, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 for his 4th consecutive Wimbledon title

Music RecordingDown With Disco!

Jul 12 "Disco Demolition Night" at Comiskey Park: fans go wild destroying disco records and cause the White Sox to forfeit second game of a doubleheader to the Detroit Tigers
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Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jul 13 Calif's Nolan Ryan and Boston's Steve Renko each lose no-hitters in 9th

MLB Pitching Legend Nolan Ryan
MLB Pitching Legend
Nolan Ryan
  • Jul 15 34th US Women's Open Golf Championship won by Jerilyn Britz
  • Jul 17 50th All Star Baseball Game: NL wins 7-6 at Kingdome, Seattle
  • Jul 17 All star MVP: Dave Parker (Pittsburgh Pirates)

Sport awardGolf Major

Jul 21 British Open Golf, Royal Lytham & St. Annes: Spaniard Seve Ballesteros wins by 3 from Jack Nicklaus & Ben Crenshaw; Nicklaus runner-up for record 7th time

Golfer and Five-Time Major Championship Winner Seve Ballesteros
Golfer and Five-Time Major Championship Winner
Seve Ballesteros
Golfer Jack Nicklaus
Jack Nicklaus
  • Jul 22 Pat Meyers wins LPGA Greater Baltimore Golf Classic
  • Jul 22 66th Tour de France won by Bernard Hinault of France

Sports record brokenBaseball Record

Jul 23 George Brett gets his 1,000th hit

MLB Third Baseman George Brett
MLB Third Baseman
George Brett

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jul 29 Canadian Open Golf (Peter Jackson Classic), St. George's CC: Amy Alcott wins by 3 from Nancy Lopez for her first major title

LPGA Golfer Nancy Lopez
LPGA Golfer
Nancy Lopez
  • Aug 2 Washington, D.C. trial attorney Edward Bennett Williams buys MLB's Baltimore Orioles from Jerold Hoffberger for reported $12.3 million

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 3 Sam Snead, at 67 years, 2 months and 7 days sets the record for the oldest player to make the cut in a major - PGA Championship at Oakland Hills CC

Golfer Sam Snead
Sam Snead

Birthdays in Sport

Birthdays 1 - 100 of 404

  • Jan 2 Jonathan Greening, British footballer
  • Jan 4 Tristan Gommendy, French racing driver
  • Jan 5 Ronnie O'Brien, Irish footballer
  • Jan 8 Adrian Mutu, Romanian footballer
  • Jan 8 Stipe Pletikosa, Croatian footballer
  • Jan 8 Seol Ki-Hyeon, South Korean footballer
  • Jan 12 Jenny Schmidgall, ice hockey forward (USA, Olympics 1998)
  • Jan 12 Grzegorz Rasiak, Polish footballer
  • Jan 15 Drew Brees, American football player (New Orleans Saints), born in Austin, Texas
  • Jan 15 Martin Petrov, Bulgarian footballer
  • Jan 16 Brenden Morrow, Canadian ice hockey player
  • Jan 16 Jason Ward, Canadian ice hockey player
  • Jan 18 Paulo Ferreira, Portuguese footballer
  • Jan 18 Brian Gionta, American ice hockey player
  • Jan 18 Kenyatta Jones, American football player, born in Gainesville, Florida
  • Jan 19 Josu Sarriegi, Spanish/Basque footballer
  • Jan 19 Svetlana Khorkina, Russian gymnast
  • Jan 21 Byung-Hyun Kim, Korean baseball player
  • Jan 21 Brian O'Driscoll, Irish rugby union footballer
  • Jan 23 Larry Hughes, American basketball player
  • Jan 23 Juan Rincón, Venezuelan baseball player
  • Jan 25 Pi Hongyan, Chinese-born French badminton player, born in Chonqing, China
  • Jan 25 Gabe Jennings, US distance runner
  • Jan 27 Rodrigo Ribeiro, Brazilian racing driver, born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Jan 27 Liesbet Van Breedam, Belgian beach volleyball player
  • Jan 27 Daniel Vettori, New Zealand cricketer
  • Jan 28 Ali Boulala, Swedish skateboarder
  • Jan 29 Sui Feifei, Chinese basketball player
  • Jan 30 Karen Smith, Australian field hockey midfielder/halfback (Olympics 1996)
  • Feb 1 Juan Silveira dos Santos, Brazilian footballer
  • Feb 1 Julie Augustyniak, American soccer player
  • Feb 2 Lindsay Langston, Modesto California, archer (Olympics 1996)
  • Feb 2 Petra Cada, Canadian table tennis player (Olympics 1996), born in Prague, Czechoslovakia
  • Feb 2 Fani Halkia, Greek hurdler
  • Feb 2 Irini Terzoglou, Greek shot putter
  • Feb 4 Giorgio Pantano, Italian racing car driver
  • Feb 7 Jon Leicester, American baseball player
  • Feb 8 Aaron Cook, American baseball player
  • Feb 9 "Casper" David Gray, English snooker player (2003 Scottish Open Winner), born in Lower Morden, Greater London
  • Feb 9 Akinori Iwamura, Japanese baseball pitcher
  • Feb 10 Ross Powers, American snowboarder, born in Bennington, Vermont
  • Feb 12 Antonio Chatman, NFL wide receiver and punt returner, born in Jackson, Alabama
  • Feb 12 Matt Mauck, NFL player, born in Jasper, Indiana
  • Feb 13 Rafael Márquez, Mexican footballer, born in Zamora, Mexico
  • Feb 14 Pablo Pallante, Uruguayan footballer
  • Feb 15 Gordon Shedden, Scottish auto racing driver, born in Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • Feb 15 Alenka Kejžar, Slovenian swimmer, born in Kranj, Slovenia
  • Feb 15 Josh Low, English footballer, born in Bristol, United Kingdom
  • Feb 16 Valentino Rossi, Italian motorcycle racer
  • Feb 17 Josh Willingham, American baseball player
  • Feb 18 Julia Greville, swimmer (Olympics 1996), born in Perth, Australia
  • Feb 19 Clinton Morrison, Irish footballer
  • Feb 19 Steve Cherundolo, American soccer player
  • Feb 21 Pascal Chimbonda, French footballer
  • Feb 21 Lonnie Ford, American football player
  • Feb 22 Brett Emerton, Australian footballer
  • Feb 24 Jesse Billauer, American quadriplegic surfer
  • Feb 26 Mariano Bainotti, Argentine racing driver
  • Feb 26 Pedro Mendes, Portuguese footballer
  • Feb 28 Virginia Ledgerwood, Chester Va, rhythmic gymnast (Olympics 1996)
  • Feb 28 Sébastien Bourdais, French auto racer, (Champ Car World Series 2004-07, Le Mans 24 Hours 2016), born in Le Mans, France
  • Feb 28 Primož Peterka, Slovenian ski jumper
  • Feb 28 Ivo Karlović, Croatian tennis player
  • Mar 2 Damien Duff, Irish footballer
  • Mar 4 Geoff Huegill, Australian swimmer
  • Mar 5 Tang Gonghong, Chinese weightlifter
  • Mar 6 Erik Bedard, Canadian baseball player
  • Mar 6 Ryan Nyquist, American BMX rider, born in Los Gatos, California
  • Mar 11 Fred Jones, American basketball player
  • Mar 11 Elton Brand, American basketball player
  • Mar 12 Edwin Villafuerte, Ecuadorian footballer
  • Mar 13 Johan Santana, Venezuelan baseball player, born in Tovar Municipality, Mérida, Venezuela
  • Mar 13 Cedric Van Branteghem, Belgian athlete, born in Ghent, Belgium
  • Mar 14 Nicolas Anelka, French footballer
  • Mar 14 Love, Angolan footballer
  • Mar 14 Sead Ramović, German-born Bosnian footballer
  • Mar 15 Kevin Youkilis, American baseball player
  • Mar 16 Edison Méndez, Ecuadorian footballer
  • Mar 17 Andrew Ference, Canadian ice hockey player
  • Mar 18 Dramane Coulibaly, Malian footballer
  • Mar 18 Anthony Maher, American soccer player
  • Mar 19 Christos Patsatzoglou, Greek footballer
  • Mar 19 Hee-Seop Choi, Korean baseball player
  • Mar 19 Ivan Ljubičić, Croatian tennis player
  • Mar 19 Hedo Türkoğlu, Turkish basketball player
  • Mar 20 Bernard O'Connor, Gaelic Footballer
  • Mar 20 Keven Mealamu, New Zealand rugby player
  • Mar 22 Juan Uribe, Dominican baseball player
  • Mar 23 Mark Buehrle, American baseball player
  • Mar 23 Misty Hyman, American swimmer
  • Mar 23 Donncha O'Callaghan, Irish rugby player
  • Mar 23 Natalya Baranovskaya, Olympic swimmer
  • Mar 24 Periklis Iakovakis, Greek athlete
  • Mar 24 Norris Hopper, American baseball player
  • Mar 24 Graeme Swann, English cricketer
  • Mar 26 Pierre Wome, Cameroonian footballer
  • Mar 26 Nacho Novo, Spanish footballer
  • Mar 27 Michael Cuddyer, American baseball player (Minnesota Twins), born in Norfolk, Virginia
  • Mar 31 Josh Kinney, American baseball player
  • Apr 4 Charles Butler, American figure skater, born in Salt Lake City, Utah

Weddings in Sport

HeartWedding of Interest

Feb 24 NBA player Bill Walton (26) weds Susan Guth

NBA Center and Television Sportscaster Bill Walton
NBA Center and Television Sportscaster
Bill Walton

HeartWedding of Interest

Oct 16 MLB outfielder Tim Raines (20) weds his high school sweetheart Virginia Hilton

MLB Outfielder Tim Raines
MLB Outfielder
Tim Raines

Divorces in Sport

Broken heartDivorce of Interest

Aug 3 Professional boxer George Foreman (30) divorces Cynthia Lewis after more than a year of marriage

Boxing Champ George Foreman
Boxing Champ
George Foreman

Deaths in Sport

  • Jan 22 Ali Hassan Salameh, [Abu Hassan], killed by car bomb; believed to have helped mastermind massacre of 1972 Munich Olympics athletes
  • Feb 2 Jim Burke, Australian cricketer (Australian opener), commits suicide at 48
  • Feb 5 Eddie Paynter, cricketer (20 Tests for England, avg 59.23), dies
  • Feb 9 C I J Smith, cricket all-rounder (5 Tests for England 1935-37), dies
  • Feb 21 Glendon Gibbs, cricketer (Test Cricket WI v Australia 1955), dies
  • Mar 17 Merv Inverarity, cricketer (father of John WA player 1925-40), dies
  • Mar 23 Ted Anderson, English footballer (b. 1911)
  • Apr 2 Carroll D Rosenbloom, LA Rams president, dies at 72
  • Apr 2 Ivan Barrow, cricketer (11 Tests for West Indies 1930-39), dies
  • Apr 6 M Marie Wadlow, American softball pitcher (Hall of Fame 1957), dies at 61
  • May 31 Nigel Howard, cricketer (England captain 1951-52 tour of India), dies
  • Jun 4 Edward Dawson, cricketer (England batsman in 5 Tests 1927-30), dies
  • Jun 9 Cyclone Taylor, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1884)
  • Jun 22 Louis Chiron, Monégasque racing drive, dies at 79
  • Jun 29 Ben Barnett, Australian cricketer (4 Tests for Australia 1938), dies at 71
  • Jul 4 Lee Wai Tong, Chinese footballer (b. 1905)

Person of interestElizabeth Ryan

Jul 5 Elizabeth Ryan, tennis ace (won 19 Wimbledon titles), dies at 87

Tennis Player Elizabeth Ryan
Tennis Player
Elizabeth Ryan
  • Jul 7 D P Conyngham, cricketer (one Test for South Africa), dies
  • Jul 9 Betty Evans Grayson, softball pitcher (Hall of Fame 1959), dies at 53
  • Jul 9 Janardhan Gnanoba Navle, cricketer (2 Tests for India), dies
  • Jul 17 Doug Meintjes, South African cricket pace bowler (v England 1922-23), dies
  • Jul 22 Tony "Two-Ton" Galento, American heavyweight boxer and actor (On the Waterfront), dies at 69
  • Jul 22 Sándor Kocsis, Hungarian footballer (Budapest Honvéd), dies at 49
  • Aug 2 Thurmon Munson, NY Yankee, killed in a plane crash at Akron Oh at 32
  • Aug 9 Walter O'Malley, American baseball team owner (Dodgers), dies at 75
  • Aug 21 Giuseppe Meazza, Italian footballer, dies at 68
  • Aug 23 Mian Mohammad Saeed, cricketer (1st Pakistan capt 1948-49), dies
  • Aug 31 E J "Tiger" Smith, England cricket wicket-keeper 1911-14), dies
  • Sep 12 Denis Smith, cricketer (England left-handed batsman 1935), dies
  • Sep 18 Gene Kelly, sportscaster (Sportsreel), dies at 60
  • Sep 25 Tapio Rautavaara, Finnish athlete, actor, and singer (Me tulemme taas, Rion yö), dies of a cerebral hemorrhage at 64
  • Nov 14 Bill Farrimond, England cricket wicketkeeper (4 Tests 1930-35), dies
  • Nov 18 Freddie Fitzsimmons, baseball player (b. 1901)
  • Dec 3 Dhyan Chand, Indian field hockey player (Olympic gold 1928, 1932, 1936), dies at 74
  • Dec 14 Nirode Ranjan Chowdhury, cricketer (2 Tests for India, avg 205), dies
  • Dec 21 Mac Anderson, New Zealand cricketer (Test for NZ 1946, scored five & one), dies at 60