On This Day

December 2020 in Sports History

Events in Sport

  • Dec 4 New Zealand cricket captain Kane Williamson smashes 251 to set up the home side's innings & 134 run win over the West Indies in the 1st Test in Hamilton
  • Dec 7 Breaking, the competitive form of breakdancing, confirmed as an Olympic sport for the Paris 2024 games

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 13 British Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton finishes 3rd in season-ending Abu Dhabi GP to claim record equalling 7th F1 World Drivers C'ship by 124 points from teammate Valtteri Bottas; Mercedes' 7th straight Constructors title

Formula 1 Driver Lewis Hamilton
Formula 1 Driver
Lewis Hamilton
  • Dec 14 US Open Women's Golf, Champions GC, Houston: Kim A-lim wins her first major title by 1 stroke from fellow South Korean Ko Jin-young and American Amy Olson
  • Dec 16 US Major League Baseball announces it is elevating the Negro Leagues to Major League status

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 22 Argentine soccer superstar Lionel Messi scores his 644th goal for FC Barcelona during 3-0 win over Real Valladolid to break Pele's record for most goals for one club; Pele, 643 goals for Santos 1956-74

Football Star Lionel Messi
Football Star
Lionel Messi
  • Dec 25 New Orleans running back Alvin Kamara equals Ernie Nevers 1929 NFL record of 6 touchdowns in a match in the Saints' 52-33 win over the Minnesota Vikings at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome
  • Dec 29 Milwaukee Bucks break NBA record for most 3-pointers made by a team in a single game with 29 in a dominant 144-97 victory over the Heat in Miami
  • Dec 30 San Antonio assistant Becky Hammon becomes first female to coach an NBA team after Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich is ejected in a 121-107 loss to the LA Lakers

Deaths in Sport

  • Dec 1 Maria Itkina, Russian athlete (9 sprint world records, 60m-400m), dies at 88
  • Dec 1 Arnie Robinson Jr., American athlete (Olympic gold long jump 1976; bronze 1972), dies from a brain tumor at 72
  • Dec 1 Denis Menke, American baseball infielder (MLB All Star 1969, 70; Milwaukee Braves, Atlanta Braves, Houston Astros, Cincinnati Reds), dies at 80
  • Dec 2 Rafer Johnson, American decathlete (Olympic gold 1960), dies from stroke complications at 86
  • Dec 5 Peter Alliss, English golfer (Ryder Cup 1957 GB winners) and author, course designer and television presenter, commentator (BBC, ESPN, ABC Sports), dies at 89
  • Dec 5 Viktor Ponedelnik, Russian soccer striker (29 caps Soviet Union; FC SKA Rostov-on-Don), dies at 83
  • Dec 5 Wojciech Zabłocki, Polish fencer (4 x World C'ship gold team; Olympic silver team sabre 1956, 60; bronze 1964), dies at 89
  • Dec 6 Neil Armstrong, Canadian ice hockey linesman (1,744 NHL games; Hockey Hall of Fame), dies at 87
  • Dec 6 Dennis Ralston, American tennis player (4 x Grand Slam doubles champion; Wimbledon singles 1966 runner-up), dies from cancer at 78
  • Dec 6 Jack Scarbath, American College Football Hall of Fame quarterback (Uni of Maryland; Washington Redskins, Pittsburgh Steelers), dies at 90
  • Dec 7 Dick Allen, American baseball infielder (7 × MLB All-Star; NL Rookie of the Year 1964, Philadelphia Phillies; AL MVP 1972, Chicago WS), dies at 78 [1]
  • Dec 7 Fred Akers, American football coach (University of Wyoming; University of Texas, Austin; Purdue; career college record 108–75–3), dies at 82
  • Dec 8 Alejandro Sabella, Argentine soccer midfielder (8 caps; River Plate, Sheffield United, Estudiantes) and manager (Argentina 2011-14), dies from heart disease at 66
  • Dec 9 Ray Perkins, American football coach (New York Giants, University of Alabama, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Arkansas State University), dies from heart disease at 79
  • Dec 9 Paolo Rossi, Italian soccer striker (48 caps; FIFA World Cup 1982 [Golden Boot, Golden Ball]; L.R. Vicenza, Juventus), dies at 64
  • Dec 9 Gordon Forbes, South African tennis player and author (French Open mixed doubles [Darlene Hard] 1955), dies from COVID-19 at 86
  • Dec 9 Ray Hunter, Northern Irish cricket all-rounder (28 international matches) and rugby union centre (10 Tests; British & Irish Lions 1962; Portadown RFC), dies at 82
  • Dec 9 Alex Olmedo, American/Peruvian tennis player (Australian C'ships, Wimbledon 1959), dies from brain cancer at 84
  • Dec 12 Motjeka Madisha, South African soccer defender (13 caps; Mamelodi Sundowns), dies in car accident at 25
  • Dec 13 Otto Barić, Croatian soccer manager (Croatia, Austria, Wacker Innsbruck, SK Rapid, SV Salzburg), dies from COVID-19 at 87
  • Dec 13 Jimmy Collins, American basketball shooting guard (Chicago Bulls) and coach (University of Illinois, Chicago 1996-2010), dies from heart surgery complications at 74
  • Dec 13 Pierre Lacroix, Canadian NHL executive (Quebec Nordiques; Stanley Cup 1996, 2001 Colorado Avalanche), dies from COVID-19 complications at 72
  • Dec 14 Gérard Houllier OBE, French soccer manager (Paris Saint-Germain, Lens, Liverpool, Olympique Lyonnais, Aston Villa, France), dies after heart operation at 73
  • Dec 14 Eric Freeman OAM, Australian cricket fast bowler (11 Tests, 34 wickets, 2 x 50s; South Australia), dies from a heart attack at 76
  • Dec 14 Günter Sawitzki, German soccer goalkeeper (10 caps West Germany; VfB Stuttgart), dies at 88
  • Dec 15 Jean-Pierre Lux, French rugby union centre (42 caps; US Tyrosse, US Dax) and administrator (President European Rugby Cup 1999-2014), dies at 74
  • Dec 16 Kálmán Sóvári, Hungarian soccer defender (17 caps; Újpesti Dózsa, VM Egyetértés), dies at 79
  • Dec 17 Pelle Svensson, Swedish Greco-Roman wrestler (World C'ship gold 100kg 1970, 71; Olympic silver 97kg 1964), dies from cancer at 77
  • Dec 19 Maria Piątkowskacka, Polish athlete (WR 4 x 100m relay 1964), dies at 89
  • Dec 20 Dietrich Weise, German soccer forward (Eintracht Frankfurt, FSV Mainz) and manager (FC Kaiserslautern, E Frankfurt, F Düsseldorf, Egypt, Liechtenstein), dies at 86
  • Dec 21 Kevin Greene, American Pro Football Hall of Fame linebacker (5 x Pro Bowl; First-team All-Pro 1989, 94, 96; LA Rams, Pittsburgh Steelers, Carolina Panthers), dies at 58
  • Dec 25 Ivan Bohdan, Ukrainian Greco-Roman wrestler (Olympic gold Soviet Union heavyweight 1960; World C'ship gold 1958, 61), dies at 92
  • Dec 25 Robin Jackman, English cricket seam bowler (4 Tests, 14 wickets; 15 ODIs; Surrey), dies from COVID-19 at 75
  • Dec 25 K. C. Jones, American Basketball Hall of Fame point guard (Olympic gold 1956; NBA C'ship 1959–66, Boston Celtics) and coach (NBA C'ship 1984, 86; Boston Celtics), dies from Alzheimer's disease at 88
  • Dec 26 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), dies of cancer at 81 [1]
  • Dec 26 Jim McLean, Scottish soccer forward (Hamilton Academical, Clyde, Dundee) and manager (Dundee United 1971-93), dies from dementia at 83
  • Dec 27 José Luiz Carbone, Brazilian soccer midfielder (6 caps; São Paulo, Internacional, Botafogo) and coach (Fluminense, Guarani), dies from liver cancer at 74
  • Dec 27 Loyd Phillips, American College Football Hall of Fame defensive lineman (University of Arkansas; Chicago Bears), dies from a stroke at 75
  • Dec 29 John F Reid, New Zealand cricket batsman (19 Tests, 1296 runs @ 46.28, 6 x 100s), dies at 64
  • Dec 29 John Paul Jr., American auto racer (IMSA GT C'ship 1982; 24 Hours of Daytona 1982, 92; 12 Hours of Sebring 1982), dies from Huntington's disease at 60
  • Dec 31 Tommy Docherty, Scottish soccer midfielder (25 caps; Preston North End) and manager (Chelsea, QPR, Scotland, Manchester United), dies at 92