You may have heard it mentioned. Britain has not had a Wimbledon men’s singles champion since Fred Perry in 1936. Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal are doing their bit to help as they’ve crashed out of Wimbledon 2013. But right now it’s a 77-year title gap, which got the Paddy Power Blog thinking about the greatest sporting title droughts.
Here’s our top five. Let us know what you think in the comments section below or via @paddypower on Twitter.
#1: Tennis (Britain)
Strawberries and cream. Cliff Richard rising from the crypt. It’s that time of year. Yes, during the 2006 World Cup he may have quipped that he’d support anyone who was playing against England. But Andy Murray now has an English girlfriend, English grandparents and lives in England. Does that now show what a traitor he really is? Either way, much like the Irish football team, England looks over borders to boost its chances of sporting success. With Nadal and Federer gone, Murray won’t have a much better chance and is 6/4 to win. Say it loud and say it proud: ‘C’mon Scotland.’
#2: Golf (Tiger Woods)
The Californian golfer (37) reclaimed his position as sport’s highest earner with $78m in the porn kitty for the 12 months to June 1 this year. Not bad. Tiger Woods may have The Open in his sights, but his sore elbow won’t help things and he’s still four majors short of Jack Nicklaus’ record 18. That’s never going to happen. Yes, Tiger has won four times on the PGA tour this season. But since his last major (2008 US Open) he has played 60 tournaments without a Major win among them. And for a smug git like Tiger, that’s a killer.
#3: Football (England)
Sorry, fans of Le Tournoi, it doesn’t count. England haven’t won a major trophy since the 1966 World Cup. Lolz. Roy Hodgson has already been to Rio to scout hostel accommodation for the couple of nights the squad will be in town next summer, if they get there. But, whatever about the World Cup, England have never won football’s European Championship – their best performances have been semi-final appearances in 1968 and 1996.
#4: Baseball (Chicago Cubs)
The Chicago Blackhawks ended a 49-year title drought as they raised ice hockey’s Stanley Cup in 2010, and followed up last Monday night with another victory. So attention has shifted across town again. It’s 105 years since the Chicago Cubs brought a World Series title home to the Windy City, despite having Hall of Famers such as Sammy Sosa, Ryne Sandberg and Andre Dawson in their ranks. Theo Epstein is president of baseball operations at the Cubs these days, installed on an eye-popping $18.5m deal after he helped land a pair of World Series titles while at the Boston Red Sox from 2002-2011. It’s still a work in progress, he says, but rumours are the Cubs are tapping up Blackhawks to see if they can pitch.
#5: Horse racing (Tony McCoy)
Iron man of the saddle AP McCoy said his riding career would have been ‘meaningless’ if he didn’t win an Aintree Grand National before retiring. McCoy has been British champion jump jockey for a record 18 consecutive times booting home more than 3,800 winners in his career so far. But it was a spring day in 2010 before he realised his burning ambition when steering Don’t Push It home at Aintree to finally get the Grand National drought monkey off his back.