On This Day

Events in Sport in 1949

  • Jan 1 35th Rose Bowl: #7 Northwestern beats #4 California, 20-14
  • Jan 1 15th Sugar Bowl: #5 Oklahoma beats #3 North Carolina, 14-6
  • Jan 1 15th Orange Bowl: Texas beats #8 Georgia, 41-28

Knighthood

Jan 1 Arguably cricket's greatest ever batsman, ex-Australian captain Don Bradman is knighted; first time a cricketer is bestowed with the honour solely for his contribution to the game

  • Jan 3 West Indian cricket batsman Everton Weekes scores 101 in 3rd Test against India in Calcutta; his world record fifth consecutive Test century
  • Jan 28 NY Giants sign their 1st black players, Monte Irvin & Ford Smith
  • Jan 31 Australian Championships Women's Tennis: American Doris Hart beats Nancye Wynne Bolton 6-3, 6-4 for the first of her 6 Grand Slam singles titles
  • Jan 31 Australian Championships Men's Tennis: Frank Sedgman wins 1st of 2 straight Australian titles; beats fellow Australian John Bromwich 6-3, 6-2, 6-2

Sports History

Feb 2 Golfing champ Ben Hogan seriously injured in an auto accident

  • Feb 5 Huaso sets official world equestrian high-jump record, 2.47 m, Chic

Sports History

Feb 7 Joe DiMaggio becomes 1st $100,000 a year baseball player for the New York Yankees

  • Feb 11 Willie Pep recaptures world featherweight boxing title

Boxing Title Fight

Mar 1 Former world heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis retires with a 66-3-0 record including 52 KOs; defended the title a record 25 times

  • Mar 5 Bradman plays his last innings in 1st-class cricket, gets 30
  • Mar 10 Detroit Tiger pitcher Art Houtteman is critically injured in an auto accident but recovers to win 15 games in 1949
  • Mar 12 Ireland retains Five Nations Rugby Championship & Triple Crown with a 5-0 win over Wales at St. Helen's Ground, Swansea
  • Mar 15 Cricket's master batsman Don Bradman receives his knighthood from the Governor-General of Australia, the Rt Hon. WJ McKell at the investiture in Queen’s Hall, Parliament House, Melbourne
  • Mar 20 LPGA Titleholders Championship Women's Golf, Augusta CC: Amateur Peggy Kirk wins her only major title by 2 strokes from Patty Berg and Dorothy Kirby
  • Mar 26 11th NCAA Men's Basketball Championship: Kentucky beats Oklahoma State, 46-36; Wildcats' back-to-back titles; center Alex Groza MOP
  • Mar 26 103rd Grand National: Leo McMorrow aboard 66/1 outsider Russian Hero wins by a comfortable 8 lengths ahead of Roimond

US Masters Golf

Apr 10 13th US Masters Tournament, Augusta National GC: Sam Snead wins his first of 3 green jackets by 3 strokes over Johnny Bulla and Lloyd Mangrum

  • Apr 13 Basketball Association of America Finals: Minneapolis Lakers beat Washington Capitols, 77-56 to take series, 4 games to 2; BAA and National Basketball League merge later that year to create the NBA
  • Apr 16 Stanley Cup Final, Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, ON: 3-peat for Toronto Maple Leafs as they beat Detroit Red Wings, 3-1 for a 4 game series sweep
  • Apr 18 53rd Boston Marathon won by Gösta Leandersson of Sweden in 2:31:50.8

Sports History

Apr 19 Yankees dedicate a plaque for Babe Ruth

Sports History

Apr 20 Jockey Bill Shoemaker wins his 1st race, in Albany, California

  • May 4 Plane carrying the entire Torino Serie A soccer squad crashes on the outskirts of Turin, Italy; 31 killed; Torino awarded League title at the request of their rivals
  • May 5 Detroit Tigers second baseman Charlie Gehringer is elected in the Baseball Hall of Fame
  • May 7 75th Kentucky Derby: Steve Brooks aboard Ponder wins in 2:04.2
  • May 14 74th Preakness: Ted Atkinson aboard Capot wins in 1:56

Sports History

May 27 Indians start 12-17, owner Bill Veeck arranges a "Second Opening Day"

  • May 28 French Championships Men's Tennis: Frank Parker retains title; beats fellow American Budge Patty 6-3, 1-6, 6-1, 6-4
  • May 28 French Championships Women's Tennis: Margaret Osborne duPont wins her second French singles crown; beats Nelly Adamson Landry of France 7-5, 6-2
  • May 30 Indianapolis 500: After finishing runner-up the previous 2 years, Bill Holland finally wins giving car owner Lou Moore his 3rd consecutive Indy victory; 1947-48 winner Mauri Rose fired after the race for ignoring team orders
  • May 31 PGA Championship Men's Golf, Hermitage CC: Sam Snead beats fellow American Johnny Palmer, 3 & 2; first time reigning Masters champion wins PGA Championship in the same calendar year.
  • Jun 11 US Open Men's Golf, Medinah CC: Cary Middlecoff wins the first of his 2 Open titles, 1 stroke ahead of Clayton Heafner and Sam Snead
  • Jun 11 81st Belmont: Ted Atkinson aboard Capot wins in 2:30.2

'Gorgeous Gussie' Shocks Wimbledon

Jun 20 Tennis star Gussie Moran shocks Wimbledon by wearing a short dress "to look good and "move more freely on the court"

Boxing Title Fight

Jun 22 Ezzard Charles beats Jersey Joe Walcott in 15 for National Boxing Association world heavyweight title

  • Jul 1 Wimbledon Men's Tennis: American Ted Schroeder beats Jaroslav Drobný 3-6, 6-0, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 for his only Wimbledon singles title
  • Jul 2 "Red Barber's Clubhouse" sports show premieres on CBS (later NBC) TV
  • Jul 2 Wimbledon Women's Tennis: Louise Brough beats fellow American Margaret Osborne duPont 10-8, 1-6, 10-8 for the second of 3 straight Wimbledon titles
  • Jul 6 Cincinnati Reds catcher Walker Cooper goes 6 for 7, (3 HRs, 3 singles, 5 runs scored, 10 RBI) in 23-4 win v Chicago Cubs
  • Jul 8 Monte Irvin & Hank Thompson, 1st black players for New York Giants, 4-3 loss to Brooklyn Dodgers at Ebbets Field
  • Jul 9 British Open Men's Golf, Royal St.George's GC: South African Bobby Locke wins a 36-hole playoff by 12 strokes from Irishman Harry Bradshaw
  • Jul 12 16th All Star Baseball Game: AL wins 11-7 at Ebbets Field, Brooklyn
  • Jul 12 Baseball owners agree to erect warning paths before each fence
  • Jul 12 LA Rams sign Norm Van Brocklin
  • Jul 14 Czech tennis stars Jaroslav Drobný and Vladimir Černík defect while playing in a tournament in Gstaad, Switzerland; Drobny accepts Egyptian citizenship
  • Jul 23 Test Cricket debut of England's Brian Close aged 18 years 149 days
  • Jul 24 Indian pitcher Bob Lemon hits 2 HRs to beat Senators, 7-5
  • Jul 24 36th Tour de France won by Fausto Coppi of Italy

Sports History

Jul 25 St Louis Cardinal Stan Musial hits for the cycle beating Bkln 14-1

  • Aug 3 Basketball Association of America (BAA) & National Basketball League (NBL) merge to form National Basketball Association (NBA), Maurice Podoloff elected head of new league
  • Aug 6 Future Hall of Famer Luke Appling appears in a MLB record 2,154th (en route to 2,218) game at shortstop for the Chicago White Sox
  • Aug 10 Ezzard Charles TKOs Gus Lesnevich in 8 for heavyweight boxing title
  • Aug 12 16th NFL Chicago All-Star Game: Philadelphia 38, All-Stars 0 (93,780)
  • Aug 20 78,382 watch White Sox play Indians at Cleveland
  • Aug 28 Davis Cup Men's Tennis, Forest Hills, NY: US takes trophy for third straight year with last day singles wins to Ted Schroeder and Pancho Gonzales; beat Australia, 4-1
  • Sep 1 Finnish long distance runner Viljo Heino runs 10,000m world record 29:27.2 in Kouvola, Finland
  • Sep 5 US National Championship Men's Tennis: Pancho Gonzales beats fellow American Ted Schroeder 16-18, 2-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4; longest singles final match by games (67), before tiebreaker introduction
  • Sep 5 US National Championship Women's Tennis, Forest Hills, NY: Defending champion Margaret Osborne duPont beats fellow American Doris Hart 6-4, 6-1
  • Sep 13 Ladies Pro Golf Association of America formed in NYC
  • Sep 17 Ryder Cup Golf, Ganton GC: US beats Great Britain, 7-5; Americans win 6 of 8 singles matches to claim victory
  • Sep 18 Baseball major league record 4 grand slams hit
  • Sep 20 Top American tennis player Pancho Gonzales turns professional
  • Sep 23 Indian owner Bill Veeck holds funeral services to bury 1948 pennant

US Women's Golf Open

Sep 25 US Open Women's Golf, Prince George's CC: Louise Suggs leads wire-to-wire to win by 14 strokes ahead of runner-up and defending champion Babe Zaharias

  • Sep 25 Despite 71 injuries, Yankees have been in 1st place all season until Red Sox move into a tie for 1st place
  • Sep 30 Pirates Ralph Kiner hits his 54th HR & NL record 16th in September
  • Oct 2 For first time in 41 years pennant races in both MLB leagues are decided on the final day of the season; (AL) Yankees upend rival Boston Red Sox, 5-3; (NL) Dodgers beat the Phillies, 9-7 for 97-57 record; Cardinals 96-58

Sports History

Oct 5 Sportswriter Robert Ruark first reports golfing great Bobby Jones's rare spinal disease (syringomyelia) which prevent him from playing any form of golf again

  • Oct 9 Baseball World Series: NY Yankees beat Brooklyn Dodgers, 10-6 at Ebbets Field for 4 games to 1 series victory; starts Yankees record run of 5 straight titles
  • Oct 10 3rd NHL All-Star Game, Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, ON: All-Stars beat Toronto Maple Leafs, 3-1
  • Oct 14 Ezzard Charles TKOs Pat Valentino in 8 for heavyweight boxing title
  • Oct 16 Red Byron in an Oldsmobile finishes 16th in the Wilkes 200 at North Wilkesboro Speedway to win NASCAR Strictly Stock C'ship in the inaugural season of pro stock car racing in the United States
  • Oct 19 A's trade 2nd baseman Nellie Fox to White Sox for Joe Tipton
  • Oct 29 White Sox trade Joe Tipton to A's for Nellie Fox

Sports History

Nov 18 NL batting leader (.342) Jackie Robinson wins NL MVP

  • Nov 21 Bill Veeck sells Cleveland Indians for $22 million, to fund his divorce settlement
  • Nov 24 Syracuse Nationals beat Anderson Packers, 125-123 in 5 OTs
  • Nov 26 CFL Grey Cup, Varsity Stadium, Toronto: Montreal Alouettes beat Calgary Stampeders, 28-15 for their first Championship
  • Dec 1 MLB announces attendance for the season is 20.2 million, down from 20.9 in 1948; New York Yankees and the Cleveland Indians each finish with over 2.2 million, but the St. Louis Browns fall to 270,000
  • Dec 3 14th Iron Bowl: Auburn beats Alabama 14-13 in Birmingham
  • Dec 4 Bob Gage ties NFL record of a 97 yard touchdown run
  • Dec 5 Ezzard Charles defeats Jersey Joe Walcott for heavyweight boxing title
  • Dec 7 15th Heisman Trophy Award: Leon Hart (end), Notre Dame
  • Dec 9 NFL merges Cleveland Browns, SF '49ers & Balt Colts from AAFC
  • Dec 11 Chicago Bear Johnny Lujack passes for 6 touchdowns vs Chicago Cards (52-29)
  • Dec 11 Cleveland Browns beat SF '49ers 21-7 in final AAFC championship game
  • Dec 18 National Football League Championship, Philadelphia Eagles beat Los Angeles Rams, 14-0; played in driving rain that caused field to become a mud pit