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Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time

If you are going to ask the very difficult question: “Who is the most famous Australian athlete of all time?” I have to take it as one of the most confusing one to be answered. But we have to accept the term as the most interesting topic too!! So if we are here trying to answer the question and find some top list of famous Australian athletes of all time, we need to be very clear about one thing that we need to base upon some generalized criteria. First we have to understand some of the basic facts why we call them as the famous Australian Athletes of all time or why they are being considered as the greatest Australian athletes of all time.

Basically, most of the time we consider the accomplishment of these famous athletes in their particular sports. This may include their titles won (Olympic medals and other major world titles). Sometimes these are their records or rankings in their total sport life statistics. As a matter of fact we find them considerable for achieving awards through their short or big sport life (length of their sports career).

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Top 10 Famous Australian Athletes:

Now, here we are determined to take action on some of these famous Australian athletes, so that we can make a short list of top 10 greatest Australian athletes in a single article. I hope the selection criteria is clear to you.

So, let’s check out, who is the most famous Australian athlete of all time?

10. Mark Ella – Rugby (American Football)

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, great, best, history, Mark Ella
Mark Ella ; image credit

Mark Gordon Ella is an Australian former rugby union player. Undoubtedly he should be considered as one of the most famous Australian athletes of all time, especially in the sport of Rugby. Though he had his career in a relatively short form, he successfully got his mark in the all-time great athletes in Australia.

The great rookie half-back Nick Farr-Jones asked once (probably sometimes before the 1984 Grand Slam tour) to Mark Ella: “Where do you want me to pass the ball?” And can guess, what was the reply from the famous Australian athlete?

– “Just throw it, I’ll catch it”

I think this was the spirit that enforced him throughout his sporting career. He is the most instinctive and intuitive footballer of any code Australian fans have ever seen. Sometimes he couldn’t even remember what he did in the game.

He played only 25 Tests and retired at 25. Most obviously this was a huge loss to the 15-man code when he was at the peak of his career. There’s never been anyone since who could remotely match him in the Rugby history of Australia.

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09. Peter Thomson – Golf

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, greatest, golfer, Peter Thomson
Peter Thomson ; image credit

Peter William Thomson is an Australian professional golfer. Probably he is best remembered for his five wins in The Open Championship. It was like Peter Thomson either won, or finished second in seven successive British Opens. And now history confirms that no golfer has ever come anywhere near that record of Thomson.

Thomson won in 1954, 1955, 1956, and 1958 and came second to Bobby Locke in 1952. He won his fifth British Open in 1965 among his 82 tournament victories. Peter has kept in close contact with his sport as a world-class golf course designer. He is our 9th pick as the most famous Australian athletes of all time.

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08. Betty Cuthbert – Athletics

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, greatest athlete, australia, Betty Cuthbert
Betty Cuthbert ; image credit

Elizabeth Cuthbert (commonly known as Betty Cuthbert) is an Australian athlete as well as a fourfold Olympic champion. She successfully set world records for 60 meters, 100 yards, 200 meters, 220 yards and 440 yards during her glorious career.

At the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, may be no one could ever forget the “Golden Girl” with hair flowing and powering her way to three gold medals. Eight years later, she won the fourth gold at Tokyo in 1964 in the 400, which was an inaugural event at those Games at that time. During the course of her wonderful career, the 8th of our most famous Australian athletes of all-time list, broke and made all the new records possible in the field of athletics.

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07. Ken Rosewall – Tennis

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, greatest tennis player, Ken Rosewall
Ken Rosewall ; image credit

Kenneth Robert Rosewall is a former world top-ranked amateur and professional tennis player. And our 7th pick as the greatest Australian athletes of all time. He is without peer in the history of tennis for his life long career. He won his first Australian singles title in 1953 and his fourth in 1972. Unbelievable but truth is the year count of 19 years.

Ken Rosewall won his first French in 1953, second in 1968, another successive story of 15 years apart. As well we can recommend the case study of US open. First in 1956, second in 1970, 14 years apart. He never won Wimbledon but reached four finals. Rosewall missed 44 Slam tournaments during his early career, which resembles like another famous Australian athlete Rod Laver.

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06. Dawn Fraser – Athletics

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, Dawn Fraser
Dawn Fraser ; image credit

Dawn Fraser is an Australian champion swimmer as well as former politician. Fraser is one of the three swimmers to have won the same Olympic event three times. This famous Australian athlete won the 100 meters freestyle three times in 1956, 1960, and 1964. Though many of her fans expected it to be five.

In Tokyo 1964 the Australian Swimming Union banned Dawn Fraser for 10 years for nicking the flag from the Palace. Unfortunately she didn’t do it. And the ASU got it right in sometimes. But it was too late to start again. Probably no one had a doubt on her to win the other two completions in Mexico 1968, and Munich 1972. Which could become the sole record of five successive golds in the same event. Still, she is one of Australia’s greatest swimmer in unforgettable history.

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05. Heather McKay – Squash

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, Heather McKay
Heather McKay ; image credit

Heather Pamela McKay is an Australian squash player. She is considered by many to be the greatest female player in the history of Squash. And possible one of Australia’s greatest-ever Athletes of all time. McKay won 16 consecutive British Open championships between 1962 and 1977. This record is undoubtedly the most coveted title in Squash.

In over 20 years of international competition Heather lost twice to Yvonne West in 1960, and Fran Marshall in 1962. Again squash wasn’t her only claim to fame. She got to be representing Australia at hockey in 1967 and 1971. She helped to win the American and Canadian Racquetball championships. She is at 5th position in this list of top 10 most famous Australian athletes of all time.

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04. Margaret Court – Tennis

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, Margaret Court
Margaret Court ; image credit

Margaret Court (known as Margaret Smith Court) is a retired world No. 1 professional tennis player from Australia. She won a record 62 Slam titles between 1960 as a 17-year-old and 1975 with 24 singles including the Grand Slam in 1970.

She also got 19 women’s doubles, and 19 mixed doubles in her very glorious sporting career. To further emphasis her dominance, Margaret Court won every possible title at all four Slams. Which can be matched only by Doris Hart and Martina Navratilova in history. She is undoubtedly one of the greatest and famous most Australian athletes of all time. Now you can decide whether to put her on 4th position or not as the most famous female Australian Tennis player ever.

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03. Rod Laver – Tennis

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, Rod Laver
Rod Laver ; image credit

Rodney George is an Australian former professional tennis player. Undoubtedly he holds the record for most singles titles won in the history of tennis in the world, which is actually 200 career titles!! Rod Laver is the only tennis player in history to win two Grand Slam singles titles. He won the first in 1962 as an amateur and the second in 1969 as a pro Tennis player.

Rod Laver won 11 Slam singles, but he was a pro when the rest of the world were amateurs. That made the famous Australian athlete of all time ineligible for 20 Slams. He was such a dominant figure that he had been eligible his Slam singles would be at least 21. For now a time we can compare with our present heroes like Roger Federer on 16 won’t get anywhere near 21 Slams like him.

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02. Herb Elliott – Athletics

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, Herb Elliott
Herb Elliott ; image credit

Herbert James (commonly known as Herb) Elliott is a former Australian athlete. He is considered as one of the greatest middle distance runners in the whole world. The magnificent athlete was a pure powerful poetry in motion on the track on his time. Unbeaten over the mile and 1500 meters throughout his stellar career.

At the 1960 Rome Olympics, he got to smash his own world record 30 meters, which is still the widest margin ever in the event. Being one of the most famous Australian athletes of all time, Herb retired after Rome at 23 and said proudly that he had nothing more to prove.

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01. Don Bradman – Cricket

Top 10 Most Famous Australian Athletes of All Time, Don Bradman
Don Bradman ; image credit

Sir Donald George Bradman (most often referred to as “The Don”) is an Australian cricket legend. And he is also widely acknowledged as the greatest Test batsman of all time Cricket. No one can put an argument when selecting this number one position in the list of top 10 most famous Australian athletes of all time for The Don.

Bradman averaged over 60% higher than the next best Test batsmen in the history of the game. Australia, especially Australian Cricket will never remember this greatest athlete ever in their land. Probably, he is considered the greatest batsman, the greatest Cricketer and most obviously the most famous Australian athlete in history.

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Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia

The term sport is the very common language for almost every human being around the globe. May be sports are the most common fiber of human life. But not necessarily all kind of sports have to be popular for every country. Each and every country has its own choice of popular sports. Some of these sports may even not played in other countries. Undoubtedly same is the case for Australia. Here we are only interested with those most popular sports in Australia or in other words you can names this topic as the most played sports in Australia. As we already know that sport is a national passion in Australia and for the Australian people. They are avid followers of ‘footy’ that covers every game from uniquely Australian AFL to rugby union.

There are a bunch of different sports played in Australia. Australian plays beach cricket and backyard all summer. They in fact spend their thousand dollars to watch the iconic Boxing Day test. No doubt that summer is considered as the season of sport around the country and especially the Grand Slam tennis tournament, which always being held in this suitable season for the Australians.

Top 10 most popular sports in Australia:

Australia has championship-designed golf courses across the country. They proudly hold the record in hosting many premier golf events. Their marathons also attract thousands of runners from all over the world. And almost people from almost all the other countries exactly know about Australia car racing events for example the Formula 1 Australia Grand Prix.

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Here in this article we are trying to figure out some of these sports which are currently considerably their prior choice in Australia. Here the term most popular sports in Australia is only meaning those games which are in fact the most watched or most played sports in Australia.

So, let’s find out, which one is the most popular sport in Australia?

10. Marathon

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, Melbourne Marathon, australian marathon
Melbourne Marathon ; image credit

Marathons can be considered the 10th in this list of most popular sports in Australia. These are definitely very big sports event on Australian sporting calendar. Mostly 10km and 5km races held.

The Great Ocean Road International Marathon is held in May. And during the month of June the popular Gold Course Airport Marathon held in Australia, in which many runners from all over the world takes part. It is believed that people from all over the world mostly enjoy popular Australian arrangement.

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09. Car Racing

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, car racing in Australia
Car racing in Australia ; image credit

Here come the sport which represents the Australian passion. Most of the Australians are found to be passionate for car racing. As well the country needs to host a number of rubber-burning events for the growing numbers of spectators.

For the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix each March, Melbourne’s Albert Park is selected as the venue. The Nikon SuperGP in October Primed V8 Supercars hit the Gold Coast. Tourists are very fond of enjoying the buzz around the Supercheap Auto Bathurst, especially in the month of October. Car racing is currently in our consideration, the 9th of the most popular sports in Australia.

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08. Cricket

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, cricket australia, most played sports
cricket Australia ; image credit

The outside World probably sometimes think cricket as the most popular sport in Australia. As they have conquered the victory trophy most dominantly for most of the times. But the fact is, it is only the 8th in this list of most played sports in Australia.

Australians are playing cricket more than 200 years. Undoubtedly this sport will always be in the popular sport list in Australia. The Australians usually play cricket at picnics, parks, beaches even at barbeques.

The Australian cricket team is one of the world’s top-ranking teams. They won the ICC world cup four times which is the biggest cricket world records. The Australian are also producing a number of Cricket heroes in short intervals. Some of their all-time legend cricket heroes are- Sir Donald Bradman, Chappell brothers, Mark Waugh, Steve Waugh and Shane Warne.

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07. Golf

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, Golf in Australia
Golf in Australia ; image credit

Golf is probably the most popular leisure sport for Australians. There are more than 1,500 golf courses across Australia. They have both private and public courses for this game. Some of these courses are champion-designed, which often boast spectacular views. But above all, the best part of Golf courses is that many courses are connected with luxurious resorts. Sometimes, these resorts offer ‘stay and play’ packages and I bet the Australian love it.

Some of Australia’s world-class golf superstars are – Greg Norman, Geoff Ogilvy, Karrie Webb and Adam Scott. Premier golf event names are – the Australian Masters, Australian PGA Championship and the Australian Open Golf.

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06. Tennis

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, Tennis Australia
Tennis Australia ; image credit

Australia becomes the headquarters for hosting international tennis tournaments every year in January. And the event is much known to most of the sports fans all over the world, it’s the most famous Australian Open.

Perth’s Hopman Cup starts in which eight top doubles teams compete for a trophy covered with Kimberley diamonds. In Brisbane, International top male tennis stars warm up for the Australian Open in the first week of the month. Female players also sharpen their serves at the Moorilla Hobart International a week later of that event.

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05. Soccer

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, soccer Australia
soccer Australia ; image credit

The first national soccer team of Australia’s was formed in 1922. The team was being ready for the tour of New Zealand. And finally Australia Soccer team made their first appearance in the World Cup finals in West Germany 1974.

The national team of Australia is commonly known as the Socceroos in Australia. Now they are several World Cups behind their first appearance. The team is also gaining success on the international circuit. Qualification for the Socceroos national team of Australia in 2010 World Cup South Africa without losing a single match confirms the popularity of soccer in Australia.

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04. Rugby Union

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, rugby union Australia
rugby union Australia ; image credit

Australian Rugby Union well known team is the Wallabies. Each year they compete with New Zealand and South Africa in the Tri-Nations Series. The battle between them and New Zealand is known as the Bledisloe Cup. Again the games with South Africa are part of the Mandela Challenge Plate.

Australia also arranges the Rugby World Cup in which many teams come to play from across the world. There are seven former Australian players, who can successfully claim to be introduced into the International Rugby Hall of Fame. So, in our current compilation we can conclude this sport as the 4th in at the top 10 most popular sports in Australia.

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03. National Rugby League (NRL)

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, National Rugby League (NRL)
National Rugby League (NRL) ; image credit

Rugby League is a full contact ball sport, which considered as the third most popular sport in Australia. We can explain this Australian sport as another branch of Rugby Union. The sport was generated in the early 20th century from Rugby Union.

NRL or The National Rugby League is mostly played in the eastern states of Australia. Most of the 16 teams of NRL are Sydney based. The NRL season starts in early March and ends with the grand final on October.

Obviously NRL competitions attract huge crowds and huge TV audiences all over the world, especially the Australian are found crazy about this event. There are also popular annual international games like the New Zealand VS Australia ANZAC Day test.

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02. Australian Football League (AFL)

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, Australian Football League (AFL)
Australian Football League (AFL) ; image credit

There is another name that the Australians mostly call this event and that is “Aussie rules”. In Australia if you see men in shorts leaping to great heights playing on a large arena with an oval ball, you can definitely be ensured of watching a game of Australian Football League (AFL). This is one of Australia’s premier spectator sport. Historians confirm that the game was developed in Melbourne in the 19th century. And the fact is, AFL is currently the most attended sporting league of the country. And that makes AFL the most popular sport in Australia.

If we try to find out its popularity region, we get Victoria. Australian people often refers this place as where this sport is practically a religion for the citizen. Sydney, Perth, Brisbane and Adelaide also have passionately supported AFL teams in recent years. AFL consist 16 teams which play 22 home and away rounds from the above mentioned time zone.

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01. Football

Top 10 Most Popular Sports in Australia, football australia
Football Australia ; image credit

Now we are bringing to you a very interesting term ‘footy’. This term actually covers four codes for the Australians. This may seem a little confusing. But the truth is, depending on different state of Australia, it can mean Soccer, Rugby League, Rugby Union or Australian Football League (AFL).

As we know that for most of the Europeans the term football means only the football, which in other words is soccer. But these four codes command a strong and loyal fan base in Australia. These are probably the most played sport in Australia in the same season from March to September.

Cricket international News flash recent


Australia’s entry in the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 will be glorified as they are at the top position in the latest Reliance ICC ODI Team rankings, released on last Monday. It’s because of their remarkable 112-run tri-series Final winning over England in Perth on Sunday. With this splendid victory, the Australia National Team currently holds a six-points advantage over second-positioned India. India also featured in this series. The ICC Cricket World Champion is a point clear of South Africa. South Africa’s point in this ranking table is 113.

There are a number of ODI series are going on in recent days. The second and final game between Pakistan and New Zealand is set to be played on Tuesday. The Black Caps is currently holding a 1-0 lead following its seven-wicket victory on Saturday. This victory secured New Zealand the sixth place while a win for seventh-placed Pakistan would level the series 1-1 and reduce the gap on New Zealand to three points.

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                    Top 10 most popular Australian sports in 2015

There are total 14 teams will compete their final ICC Cricket World Cup warm-up fixtures ahead of the starting of this gigantic cricket tournament on February 14.

However, Australia’s hard hitter Glenn Maxwell has moved up 19 places to 17th position in the Reliance ICC Player Ranking for ODI Batsmen. He is the highest mover in the top 20 ranking after scoring a stunning 152 runs in five matches. Another Australian James Faulkner ( up 14 places to reach 21) is just two points behind South Africa’s Faf du Plessis in 20th place.

Australia victory ; image credit

England’s Ian Bell was the highest runs scorer in the series (247 runs). He has also vaulted 13 places to 25th. One the other hand, South Africa’s skipper AB de Villiers is in top spot of this ranking table. He is 24 points clear of his team-mate Hashim Amla.

There were also some positive developments for Black Caps batsman Luke Ronchi, who made his career high at 27th. England’s James Taylor also gained up to 86 th position, by stepping 53 steps in the world rankings.

There is a remarkable change in the ICC Players Rankings for ODI Bowlers. England’s pacer Jimmy Anderson has moved up two places to fourth place after taking seven wickets in the Tri-series. He had a stunning bowling average of just under 20. Australian bowler Mitchel Starc was the top wicket-taker in that Tri-series. He grabbed 12 wickets in five matches. Starc has moved up five places to seven, while England’s highest wicket-taker Steven Finn has progressed 14 places to 12th because of his 11 wicket-haul in five matches in that Tri series. England spinner Moeen Ali has also stepped forward by 41 places to 56th after taking seven wickets in the Tri-series.

always favorite team ; image credit

Other significant movers in the world rankings include New Zealand fast bowler Trent Boult (up 56 places to 61st) and West Indies pacer Jason Holder (up 18 places to a career high 41 place)

However, there are also some changes in the Reliance ICC Player Rankings for All- rounders. Bangladesh’s skipper Shakib-Al-Hasan has regained his number one ranking as an all-rounder after moving up two places. He is 10 points clear of Sri Lankan all-rounder Angelo Mathews in the second place.

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