The year 2018 was a great year for sports. These are just some of the stories that captured my interest.
In tennis Serena Williams will have to wait until next year to finally break Margaret Court's Grand Slam record after losing two finals. She may also want to control her temper too after her infamous outburst at the U.S. Open final which overshadowed the eventual Champion and first time winner Naomi Osaka of Japan.
In WWE Ronda Rousey proved that she is the "Baddest Woman on the Planet" by capturing the RAW Women's title although the UFC's Cris Cyborg will want dispute the title that the WWE has bestowed on her. Ronda will also have to thank Ms. Mc Mahon for resurrecting her career and her waning reputation though. Another win on Monday against Natalya would be the perfect Christmas gift for the former UFC Fighter turned Wrestler.
In MMA Daniel Cormier showed why he is the best fighter on earth after a stunning first round knockout of Heavyweight Champion Stipe Miocic and then went on to successfully defend his title against a Black Beast. Cris Cyborg gave Yana Kunistskaya a rude awakening as the Russian moved up in weight class to challenge her for the Featherweight title. For Kunistskaya, it was a case of biting off a bit more than she could chew. A whole lot more. Another win later this month against her compatriot and current Bantamweight Champion Amanda Nunes will underline Cyborg's status as the greatest women's MMA fighter ever. Valentina Shevchenko should show her gratitude to Dana White for creating the Flyweight Division so that she can finally become a UFC Champion. A third loss to Nunes may have forced her to quit the UFC for Invicta or even worse WWE.
In football Real Madrid once again reigned as the undisputed Kings of Europe after whipping Liverpool in the Champions League final 3-1. Although Liverpool fans would have a legitimate excuse for that loss and a reason to be angry as Sergio Ramos appeared to have deliberately injured Mohammed Salah which resulted in the Egyptian dislocating his arm. That said, the Liverpool goalkeeper Karius must also take some share of the blame.
Finally, in the World Cup Germany fell to the "curse of Champions" and became the third straight Defending Champion from Europe and the fourth Defending Champion in five World Cups to exit the tournament at the group stage following losses to Mexico in their opening match and Korea Republic in their last group match. The last minute victory over Sweden in their second match was the only highlight for the Germans. The most shocking thing about this debacle though is that the Head Coach Joachim Lowe still has his job. The French once again reached the pinnacle of footballing greatness after outclassing a valiant but jagged Croatia outfit 4-2 in a brilliant final at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow. But at least the Croatians can blame that loss on the fact that they played extra time in their three previous knockout games.