2020 was a strange yet still compelling year for sport and 2021 promises to be more of the same. Here are five big names with the potential to light up the year.
Can Hamilton become the most successful driver in the history of Formula One? It would be unwise to back against him at this stage (Hamilton 2/5 fav – 2021 F1 World Championship Outright).
The 35-year-old shone once again for Mercedes in 2020 to take his seventh world title and equal the record of the legendary Michael Schumacher.
With Ferrari falling well short of the pace, it was a relatively straightforward triumph for Hamilton in a truncated 2020 season.
The Red Bull team made some ground, but Mercedes were ultimately in a class of their own and there is no evidence yet to suggest that will change in 2021.
Tyson Fury/Anthony Joshua
2021 may be the year the most eagerly anticipated fight in British heavyweight boxing finally takes place (Fury 4/7, Joshua 13/8, Draw 25/1 – Bout Betting).
Both men have repeatedly called each other out over the last few years with both camps negotiating furiously to ensure the fight takes place.
Joshua ended 2020 with a very comfortable ninth-round stoppage against Kubrat Pulev and the Briton looks in good shape.
Fury’s last fight was in February as he finally defeated Deontay Wilder to win the WBC belt – the only one missing from Joshua’s collection.
Rashford had a great 2020 both on and off the field but 2021 will be where he focuses his on-field contributions.
Manchester United (5/1 – Premier League Outright) – for all their inconsistency – sit second in the Premier League and are firmly in the title race after an excellent Christmas period.
Rashford has been at the forefront, scoring 21 times for club and country in 2020, and he will be hoping to play a big part on the international stage in Euro 2020, where Gareth Southgate’s men aim to build on an excellent World Cup three years ago (England 5/1 – Euro 2020 Outright).
Before the Tokyo Olympics fell foul of Covid-19, Johnson-Thompson was hailed as one of Britain’s best hopes for a gold medal.
The Liverpudlian enjoyed a great build-up, winning the heptathlon at the 2019 World Championships in Doha with a record points haul as she aims to follow in the footsteps of Jessica Ennis-Hill.
That, plus her gold medal in the 2018 Commonwealth Games, means the 27-year-old is the one to beat heading to Japan.
2021’s first major sporting final takes place at Alexandra Place on Sunday as Gerwyn Price takes on double world champion Gary Anderson (Price 4/5, Anderson EVS – Match Betting).
A Price win could be a defining moment in the sport. It would lift the Welshman to world number one, dethroning the dominant force Michael van Gerwen.
Price’s fiery demeanour has earned admirers and detractors but there is no doubting his quality at the oche. A year-long battle with Van Gerwen will be a gripping watch.
Source: Darts – Betfred