Have you ever wondered what would have happened if Bjorn Borg had taken up golf instead of tennis? Would the world have been a different place if Martina Navratilova had played ‘keeper for West Germany’s football team? What if Shane Warne had taken up sumo wrestling or Ayrton Senna had played football for Spain?
While crossovers from one sport to another are relatively infrequent, and generally unsuccessful when they do occur (think Michael Jordan in MLB), millions of sports fans around the world must have wondered at one time or another what would have happened if their favourite sport stars had picked up different codes.
To explore this theme we take a look at some of the world’s top sportspeople and the sports to which they might make an easy transition:
Tiger Woods – Cricket
Tiger Woods would make the consummate world-class batsman. With his taciturn demeanour, resistance to pain, patience, timing and determination, Woods would easily rival the feats of the likes of Sir Donald Bradman.
Taking over at the helm of the United States cricket team as captain/batsman, Woods would transform cricket into America’s national sport overnight. Four years into his reign as captain Woods would help America win the cricket world cup at their first attempt by scoring double centuries in every innings.
Serena Williams – Rugby Union
Serena Williams was almost certainly destined to blast holes in some of the toughest defences in test rugby. With the physique of a Samoan warrior, Williams would use brute force, pace and a devastating side step to send fear coursing through the veins of her opponents.
The All Blacks would leap at the chance of recruiting Williams to their side, based on suggestions of a distant Polynesian ancestor, and would commission Adidas to design Serena the world’s first ergonomically perfect rugby skirt.
New Zealand would go on to field their first all-women test side at the 2015 World Cup, which they would subsequently win.
Roger Federer – Golf
Blessed with the personality and disposition of a cyborg, Roger Federer is perfectly suited to the game of golf. With Tiger Woods leading the American cricket team, Federer would have little trouble establishing dominance in the sport, and would win every tournament he participated in at first attempt, causing half the membership of the PGA to file for bankruptcy during his first year in the sport.
Federer’s dominance of the PGA Tour would continue until Rafael Nadal made the decision to follow Federer into golf, bringing with him golf’s first 2 mile drive. Despite inadequacies in his short game, Nadal’s strength would convert every par 5 into a par 2, allowing him to challenge Federer for dominance on the PGA Tour.
The two would contest a 90-hole sudden death playoff at the 2014 US Open, which Nadal would win with a hole-in-one on the 865 yard par 5 18th.
Sir Alex Ferguson – Cage Fighting
The world’s most successful football coach didn’t get to the top by being a nice person. Violence, aggression and lots of shouting have helped Alex Ferguson whip Manchester United into title winning form for over a decade.
Sir Alex would quit as coach of Manchester United in the wake of Wayne Rooney’s transfer to Real Madrid and apply for a license as a cage fighter.
Armed with a sliver plated tea set, the furious Ferguson would scream his opponents into a state of mortal fear, before inflicting grievous physical damage using a combination of tea-set kung fu and highland wrestling.
Ferguson would enjoy a decade long reign as MME champion, before quitting the sport and helping a tribe of Congolese Pygmies win the gold in the Olympic basketball tournament.
And some other unlikely sports crossovers…
Wayne Rooney Plays Tennis
We think the main reason anyone watches tennis is to ogle Maria Sharapova’s backside. Or backhand. Wayne Rooney has been voted the most hideous person in sport for 3 consecutive years and looks like a very strong contender once again this year. His ugly mug on the tennis court will ruin everything for everyone, everywhere, all of the time.
Britney Spears Fails at Failing
With Britney’s music career, hairstyle, boob job and life falling to pieces again, she seems like a likely candidate for a crossover into sport. Let’s hope she sticks to failing at what she’s doing now. Whatever that may be.
Serena Williams eats Cristiano Ronaldo
We have never doubted that Serena William’s rugby career would be an incredible success. However, if she does ever decide to change her sporting direction to football, it might force cry-babies like Cristiano Ronaldo to quit. He seems to collapse and roll up into a tight little ball even when an opponent much less imposing than Serena comes too close.
Ronaldinho tees off
Hey, this one might actually work. We don’t know why though. He seems a little bit friendlier than Tiger Woods. And, it could be interesting to see him challenge Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
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