Prominent Athletes who Became Knights and Dames

Today we will present to you several legendary and renowned athletes who have been knighted for their contribution to sport. The tradition of knighting athletes has been prevalent in the United Kingdom, where athletes are recognized and honored for their significant achievements in the sporting world.

The List of Most Knighted Athletes

Dame Kelly Holmes

Dame Kelly Holmes: Born in Hildenborough, Kelly Holmes is one of Britain’s most prominent middle distance athletes. Throughout her career she was won numerous international accolades including two gold medals from the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. This accomplishment indeed added to her repertoire, showcasing her resilience and determination. In 1998, she became a Member of the Order of the British Еmpire (MBE) for her service to the British Army. Seven years later, Kelly Holmes became a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE). She was invested with the honour by HM The Queen, Elizabeth II.

Sir Andy Murray: The Scottish tennis star Andy Murray has also been recognized for his achievements in the field of sports. Murray, who has won three Grand Slam titles, two Olympic gold medals, and a Davis Cup, was knighted in 2016. His achievements, especially winning the Wimbledon Championship in 2013, were momentous for British sports.

Gareth Edwards: Born, Gareth Owen Edwards, he played his entire career for the Cardiff Rugby Football Club. Not only did he leave an indelible mark on the rugby field, but his honorary knighthood in 2015 also highlighted the significance of rugby in British culture. He is credited as the “Greatest rugby player to have donned the Welsh national jersey”. He is one of the few Welsh players to have won three Gland Slams during their careers. In 2015, Gareth Edwards became the latest rugby union player to be knighted by the British Royal Family.

Sir Alex Ferguson: Widely regarded as one of the most successful and respected football managers in the history of the game, Sir Alex Ferguson led Manchester United to 13 Premier League titles and two Champions League titles. His extraordinary success and influence in football were acknowledged when he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1999.

Norman Brookes: Norman Brookes is the only tennis player in history to be knighted. He was born in 1877, in St. Kilda, Australia and was one of the finest tennis players of his time. His legacy, besides winning championships, also set a precedent for other knighted athletes in the years to come. In 1907, he was ranked world number one and after he retired from the sport, he became the president of the Australian Lawn Tennis Association. Throughout his career he has won the Australian Open in 1911 and the legendary Wimbledon Tennis Championship in 1907 and 1914. He was knighted in 1939. His wife, Mabel Brooks was knighted several years later in 1955 for her involvement in social and charitable causes.

Sir Lewis Hamilton: Another prominent figure from the athletic field is Sir Lewis Hamilton, a seven-time Formula One World Champion. Known for his speed and precision, Hamilton was knighted in 2021. His achievements are celebrated worldwide, making him one of the most recognized figures in motorsport.

Ian Wright: Former professional football player, Ian Wright was one of England’s most prolific strikers during the mid-1980s and 1990s. He spent most of his career in Crystal Palace F.C and Arsenal F.C. His contributions to English football are undeniable, and his story is an inspiration for aspiring athletes. It is at the latter club that he gained international recognition and gained legendary status as he helped his team win the double (FA Premier League and FA Cup) in 1998. He retired from football in 2000 and soon after he was honoured with the MBE for his service to the sport. You can learn more about Ian Wright and his achievements at Arsenal F.C by visiting the club’s museum. You can do that while the movers providing your man and van services are handling your relocation for you. Don’t be hesitant into using professional assistance as presently man and van companies work with reasonable prices.

Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson: Paralympian Tanni Grey-Thompson, now known as Baroness Grey-Thompson, is another exceptional athlete. She has won a total of 16 Paralympic medals, including 11 golds, and has set over 30 world records. She was made Dame in 2005 and later elevated to the House of Lords, making substantial contributions beyond the sporting world.

Alec Bedser: Alec Bedser is a former English cricketer who played as a medium-fast bowler. He was not only an exceptional player but also a symbol of sportsmanship and dedication. He is often recognised as one of the finest British cricketers of the 20th century. His career spanned for a total of 21 years during which he played only for one club, Surrey County Cricket Club. During World War II, he joined the RAF Police and was later sent to France with the British Expeditionary Force. He was knighted in 1996.

Sir Alastair Cook: Another cricketer, Sir Alastair Cook, was knighted for his services to cricket. As the former captain of the England Test and One-Day International teams, Cook led his team to numerous victories and is known for his calm and composed demeanor on the field. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2019.

Dame Ellen MacArthur, famed for her impressive career in sailing, and Sir Nick Faldo, renowned for his achievements in golf, are exemplary British citizens honored for their contributions to sports. MacArthur, who has sailed in three Olympic Games, was knighted by Prince Charles, recognizing her relentless spirit and determination. Faldo, a six-time Major winner, was similarly honored for his outstanding golf career.

Meanwhile, the London Marathon, an event that unites thousands of athletes and spectators, has witnessed incredible performances by several of these esteemed individuals, further cementing their legacies.

Honourable mentions: Boxer, Sir Henry Cooper, cyclist, Dame Sarah Storey, horseman, Sir Mark Todd, and racing driver, Sir Jackie Stewart. Additionally, we must also acknowledge Sir Bradley Wiggins, who made history by winning the Tour de France and Olympic gold medal in the same year, Sir Mo Farah, who secured his legacy with four Olympic gold medals and Sir Ian Botham, who was knighted for his contributions to cricket and charity. Sir Mo Farah is particularly celebrated for his “double-double”, having won the 5,000m and 10,000m titles in two successive Olympic Games.

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    Previously serving as a logistics coordinator, Jeremy's comprehensive understanding of the industry gives him the ability to translate complex procedures into easy-to-understand blog posts. He has a particular knack for tackling the intricacies of London's removals scene, from the congested roadways to the unique challenges of navigating historic neighborhoods. As an authentic Londoner, Jeremy combines practical knowledge with his inherent love for the city, offering readers not only information on man with van removals but also local insights and valuable tips.