With 2016 now over everyone turn their attention to 2017. This article will focus on what I believe will happen in 2017 in the sporting world and which I am really looking forward to. For many sports 2017 is a year to build to competitions or use momentum gathered from the later part of 2016 to build and make 2017 good for them. Here are my 10 predictions for sport in 2017.
10/ Cook to Step Down
Alastair Cook will step down from captain of the England cricket team after the thrashing his team received against India in the later part of 2016. He will continue in the test side but from the interviews he gave during and after the test series he just looked done. Joe Root to take over as captain.
9/ Anthony Joshua to beat Wladimir Klitschko.
People think Joshua is still not good enough to beat Klitschko but I feel he is ready and will beat him on points. This will be good for boxing as it will lead to a passing of the torch from the old guard to the younger talent. Will be a hard-fought match but I think AJ to win.
8/ A non-Mercedes World Champion.
This could be the year we see a different car win the drivers’ championship. In my opinion it will be Daniel Ricciardo. Mercedes to retain the constructors title again but we will see a new name on the drivers’ championship.
7/ England to retain the 6 Nations Title.
I think they will do it again. England look insanely strong, have such great squad depth and have a coach who demands an incredibly high standard it will be hard to look past them for the 6 Nations as they continue to build to the 2019 World Cup in Japan.
6/ Gordon Strachan will no longer be Scotland Manager.
The wee mans’ time in charge of the national side is drawing to an end and many fans, including myself, will be relieved when he steps down or is told to go. Failure to qualify for France and Russia all but officially gone he picks the wrong players and doesn’t seem to understand the we need to win games to qualify for major tournaments. I suspect in 2017 he will go before June.
5/ England to win the ICC Champions Trophy.
England in One Day cricket are very strong and are now capable of setting world record scores and in home conditions I think they will win the 10-team competition.
4/ Chelsea to win the Premier League.
After the momentum, they gathered in the second half of 2016 Chelsea look very strong going into 2017 and I suspect that they will win the Premier league in comfortable fashion.
3/ New Zealand 2-1 Lions.
This is one of the sporting events I am looking forward to the most this year. The Loins are one of the best things about rugby union. With 3 of the 4 home nations doing very well right now but Wales are on the slide but still have many quality players. But New Zealand should win but it will be close.
2/ England to retain the ashes.
This is number 2 in my list mainly because it takes place in the winter of 2017 so is a long way off. I think England will win 3-2 in Australia with Cook being the top run scorer of the year as the pressure of captaincy will be off him by then if the first prediction on this list is correct.
1/ Andy Murray to win 2 Grand Slams.
I have him to continue his great form and pick up 2 grand slams this year. I think one of those will be Wimbledon and the other will be the Australian open in a few weeks. He seems to be getting better year after year and now he is no.1 in the world he will grow as a competitor and hopefully start to dominate the major tournaments more.