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This article explores some of the most talented individuals who dominated the sports they played or are still playing.

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10 Athletes Who Dominated Their Sports Like a Boss

10. KELLY SLATER

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In our little lives, only few of us are lucky enough to surpass our childhood heroes. Robert Kelly Slater (a Floridian professional surfer) is one of those lucky dudes. In 2007 when he became the all-time leader in career event wins by winning the Boost Mobile Pro event, Slater transcended the three-time world champion and his hero Tom Curren. Known for his competitive prowess and style. Kelly Slater is 11-times ASP World Tour Champion, 5 of which he’d won in a row between 1994–98.

9. ALEKSANDR KARELIN

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Nicknamed the ‘Russian Bear’ Karelin, now retired was a Greco-Roman wrestler for the Soviet Union and Russia. He’s been crowned with a bunch of other names too -“Alexander the Great”, “Russian King Kong” and “The Experiment” which he absolutely deserves thanks to a record 887 win with only two losses in his entire career. [watch some of highlights]

Karelin was born extraordinarily big, weighing 6.8 kg (15 lb). He began training as a wrestler in 1981 and went undefeated from 1982 to 1987 then after suffering a pair of losses resumed his winning streak for the second time from 1987 to 2000. Karelin is known for his inhumanly strength, lightening quickness combined with his dominance of the sport. This Hulk of a man knew well how to utilise his power to his advantage. Karelin was known for something called the ‘Karelin lift’ where he would hoist his opponents up into the air and slam him down violently. That throw alone would get him 5 points. He’d won gold medals thrice at the 1988, 1992 and 1996 Olympic Games and a silver medal in the 2000.

8. MARGARET COURT 

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The International Tennis Hall of Fame states, “For sheer strength of performance and accomplishment there has never been a tennis player to match (her)”. Margaret Smith Court is now a retired world No. 1 professional tennis player who amassed more major titles than any other player in history of professional tennis.

Court entered the tennis world with a bang winning seven consecutive singles titles at the Australian Championships starting at the age of 17 in 1960. During the open era in the 1970s Court became the first woman and the second woman in history to win the singles Grand Slam all in the same year. Court won a record 24 of those titles, and also 19 women’s doubles and 21 mixed doubles titles making a record 64 major titles overall. Believe it or not she is the only player in tennis history to complete a multiple slam in all three disciplines: singles, women’s doubles, and mixed doubles.

7. MICHAEL SCHUMACHER

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Widely regarded as the greatest formula one racing driver (the game that considerd to be one of Highest Paying and Popular sport in the world, Schumacher has won the Formula One World Champion seven-breathtaking-time.

When he was young his parents took him to the karting track where he joined and became the youngest member of the karting club. And when he found out that in Germany one had to be 14 years old to obtain a kart license he flew straight to Luxembourg and obtained the license at the age of 12.

Schumacher holds a number of records including most championships, most races won in a single season, race victories, pole positions and fastest laps. Besides his kicking career, Michael Schumacher had also invested his efforts as an ambassador for UNESCO and a spokesman for driver safety. An unfortunates skiing accident in December 2013 has currently left him paralyzed and wheelchair-bound.

6. SÉBASTIEN LOEB

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Sébastien Loeb, now retired, was once hailed as the ‘Champion of Champions’ in professional rally and racing driving. This French asskicking athlete has won the world championship a record nine times in a row. Added to this he holds several other WRC records, including most wins, most points and most podium finishes.

He had started his career as a gymnast becoming a four-time Alsatian champion. But in 1995 later having found out that he was fascinated by speed he turned his attention to racing. And thank God he did because by 2001 he’d impressively won the Junior World Rally Championship. Loeb is a three-time Race of Champions winner. He was named the French Sportsman of the Year twice (in 2007 and 2009) and was also entitled as the Knight of the Legion of Honour (Légion d’honneur) in 2009. He retired from World Rallying in 2012. Definitely one of the 10 Athletes Who Dominated Their Sports.

5. HAILE GEBRSELASSIE

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Gebrselassie is an Ethiopian long-distance track and road running sensation. When he was a little boy Gebrselassie had to run 10 kilometers to school which not only resulted in honing of his talent but he developed a peculiar running posture where his left arm became a bit crooked as if holding invincible school books. Definitely one of the 10 Athletes Who Dominated Their Sports.

Having broken 61 Ethiopian national records, Gebrselassie is widely considered as the greatest distance runners in history of the game. He gained prominence at the 1992 Junior World Championships in Seoul after winning both the 5000-metre and 10,000-metre races. His record at Berlin Marathon of having completed run in 2:03:59 still stands. Gebrselassie has won Olympic gold medals twice, Berlin Marathon four consecutive times and also three straight wins at the Dubai Marathon. Need we say anymore?

4. LIN DAN

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This badass badminton player belongs to China. Nicknamed ‘Super Dan’ started playing badminton at the age of 5 against his parents’ wishes who wanted him to learn piano. Surely they don’t mind their son’s defiantness now. Anyway back to Dan’s amazing achievements – he is a five-time world champion, five-time world champion and two-time Olympic champion.

Dan has won all nine major titles in the badminton world – Olympic Games, World Championships, World Cup, Thomas Cup, Sudirman Cup, Super Series Masters Finals,  Asian Games, All England Open, and Asian Championships – therefore completing  the “Super Grand Slam.” No wonder today there are plenty of people who regard him as the greatest singles player of all time.

Interesting fact: Lin Dan had received a master’s degree from Huaqiao University becoming the first active Chinese badminton player to have been honored thus.

3. JAHANGIR KHAN

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I’ve already mentioned this God of squash before but non-the-less this list would be incomplete without mentioning Jahangir Khan. Born in Pakistan, ever since the day Khan had started playing squash in 1979 at the age of 15, he has excelled. He went on to become the youngest winner of the World Armature Individual Championship and later becoming the youngest World Open Champion. Believe it or not but between 1981 and 1986 he won 555 consecutive matches which was hailed as the ‘longest winning streak’ in the history of professional sports. It earned him a place in the Guinness World Record. Definitely one of the 10 Athletes Who Dominated Their Sports.

2. DHYAN CHAND

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The great Indian Field Hockey player, Dhyan Chand is often recognized as Definitely one of the 10 Athletes Who Dominated Their Sports. to have ever lived. He played in India hockey history’s brightest era and had reputedly scored more than 400 goals in his glorious international career. Cricket world’s legend Don Bradman after watching Chand in action had remarked “He scores goals like runs in cricket”. He had earned three Olympic gold medals in 1928, 1932, and 1936 and once had served as the captain of the national team. Chand passes away in 1979.

Interesting facts: This master player’s magical control over the ball wasn’t just extraordinary goal-scoring feats but also earned him the nickname – ‘The Wizard’. And ridiculously enough in Netherlands, the authorities broke his hockey stick to check if there was a magnet inside.

1. ESTHER VERGEER

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Vergeer (now retired) is a Dutch wheelchair tennis player who dominated Wheelchair Tennis for 14 damn years – starting from 1999 right to her retirement in 2013. She had one heck of a childhood when she often suffered from strokes, migraines, basically a lot of pains. Shuttling between home and hospital, they soon discovered that Vergeer had a vascular myelopathy around her spinal cord which led to a 9 hours operation. By the end of the operation Vergeer had lost her ability to walk. Following this sad incident Vergeer while rehabilitating began playing basketball, volleyball and tennis in her wheelchair. Definitely one of the 10 Athletes Who Dominated Their Sports.

For 668 weeks Esther Vergeer had held the world’s number one position. In single matches she’s got a jaw dropping straight 470 win. In her moderately long career she has lost only 25 matches and won 700 more. Now finally speaking of titles, combining both singles and doubles, Vergeer has managed to win 7 Paralympics, 22 year-end championships and 42 Gram Slams. I know Roger Federer is probably jealous too.

Athletes Who Dominated Their Sports Like a Boss

1. ESTHER VERGEER
2. DHYAN CHAND
3. JAHANGIR KHAN
4. LIN DAN
5. HAILE GEBRSELASSIE
6. SÉBASTIEN LOEB
7. MICHAEL SCHUMACHER
8. MARGARET COURT
9. ALEKSANDR KARELIN
10. KELLY SLATER

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“If you don't know history, then you don't know anything. You are a leaf that doesn't know it is part of a tree”― believing in this moral I’ve decided to write about every kick-ass athlete and ancient forgotten sports that existed in this world. Happy reading sports history! You can & should follow me on Twitter.