Due to Lleyton Hewitt’s triumph at the Brisbane International, we’ve put together a collection of the top comebacks ins sport and entertainment. Take a look at who makes our list and see if you agree.
The ‘comeback’ in sport especially can be a hard thing to accomplish. From attempting to regain your form, to getting back to the top of the charts with a hit single, making a ‘comeback’ requires strategy and a lot of hard work.
Lleyton Hewitt stunned the sporting world yesterday by beating tennis legend Roger Federer in the Brisbane International Final. Both players are former number ones but Hewitt is currently ranked 60th in the world compared to Roger Federer’s 6th.
Many are arguing the heat and Federer’s heavy Brisbane International program may have contributed to the win, but Hewitt undeniably made an epic comeback to make the final and then to finish triumphant was the icing on the cake.
In the spirit of Lleyton’s accomplishment here are another 20 comebacks in sport and entertainment that shocked the world.
1. Michael Jordan – Basketball
He quit – he made a comeback and then made the Bulls almost unbeatable. He retired and then came back in 2001 and by 2003 he became the only 40 year old to score more than 40 points in one game. Two comebacks and multiple massive triumphs make Michael Jordan the comeback King.
2. Steve Redgrave – Rowing
Steve Redgrave won gold in the 1996 olympics and swore to never go near a boat again. Then at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney he made a comeback and took out gold yet again.
3. Allan Langer – Rugby League
For all the Origin fans the shock return of Allan Langer to the Origin series in 2001 was a treat for Queenslanders, not so much for NSW.
4. Andre Agassi – Tennis
Agassi struggled with substance abuse off the court made his rank plummet by the end of 1997. The Tennis star came back with a new lease on life in 1998 and after much success won the French open in 1999.
5. Mark Occhilupo – Surfing
Bursting ontp the surfing scene at the tender age of seventeen, Occhilupo was destined for greatness. Unfortunately in the years to come he struggled with weight and personal problems and dropped of the surfing scene altogether. Then he made his comeback in the 90’s and won the World Title at 33 years old.
6. Muhammed Ali -Boxing
ALi refusal to be drafted led to the legend being unable to box for almost three years, then in 1970 he came back and beat Jerry Quarry in a mere three rounds.
7. Darra Torres – Swimming
One of the lesser known comeback queens Darra Torrss is a swimmer from the U.S who competed in five Olympic Games, the first when she was only 14. She missed the 2004 Olympics but made her comeback in 2008 winning 3 silver medals and becoming the first woman to swim in the Olympics over the age of 40.
8. Torvill and Dean – Ice dancing
After their legendary success at the 1984 Olympics Torvill and Dean had a short stint as professional ice dancers, then they returned to the Games in 1994 and won bronze.
9. Chris Del Bosco – Skiing
A Canadian cross-country skier Chris Del Bosco was stripped of two U.S National Titles due to substance abuse and then at the age of 21 was found drunk in a ditch with a broken neck. Several years later Del Bosco overcame his demons and in 2010 he took out Gold at the Winter X-Games and then went on to win bronze at the Winter Olympics.
10. Kim Clijsters -Tennis
Beligian tennis star Clijsters retired in 2007 only to return to the court and win the US Open in 2009.
1. Elvis Presley
By the late 60s Elvis Presley was clsoe to losing his title as music head honcho to the likes of The Bealtes, then came the televised comeback special in 1968 and his title of “The King” was restored, for a short time at least.
2. Fleetwood Mac
Fleetwood Mac’s return in the mid-seventies is a blessing to this da. Now the group is touring again and just released a deluxe greatest hits album.
3. Miley Cyrus
After years as an innocent fairly forgettable Disney Star – 2013 was the year of Miley, controversy and fame beyond belief made Miley a pop culture icon.
4. Kylie Minogue
Minogue struggled to break into the U.S market even with hits like Locomotion which shot her to fame, then in 2001 Kylie had a new sound and new hits like ‘I can’t get you outta my head’ and ‘Spinning Around’ and the U.S market was hers.
5. Drew Barrymore
A child star thanks to E.T., Barrymore ventured down a dark path in her tweens. Then she returned to the Big Screen with ‘Scream’ in 1996 and the rest as they say is history.
6. Justin Timberlake
After a seven year hiatus starring in several films Timberlake returned to music and released his latest album ‘The 20/20 Experience’. The album met much success and the Pop Prince has been going from strength to strength ever since.
7. Mickey Rourke
Another 80’s star who struggled to regain stardom made his come back with the lead role of The Wrestler which won him a Golden Globe and an Oscar nomination.
8. Jason Bateman
Bateman’s career was headed down the average road until the launch of the sitcom Arrested Development, now Bateman is one of the more coveted comedic actors in Hollywood.
Affleck had screenwriting success in 1997 winning an Oscar for ‘Good Will Hunting’ (which he co-wrote with pal Matt Damon) then for a few years stumbled around acting in several average Hollywood blockbusters ( Daredevil). But recently Affleck’s talents for directing and writing have again been rewarded after the success of ‘Gone Baby Gone’ and ‘The Town, Affleck won a Best Picture Oscar for Argo in 2012.
10. Robert Downey Junior
Drugs – rehab – IRONMAN enough said.
We know there are plenty more amazing comeback stories out there, what are your favorites?