Date: May 31, 2017
Author: Mark Hayes

Aussie golfers in most famous sportspeople list

Two Australian athletes are in the ESPN World Fame 100 – and they’re both golfers.

Jason Day and Adam Scott come in at No.85 and No.98, respectively, in the list of most famous active sportspeople in the world, released today by the American-based sports media giant.

Golf contributed the third largest number of athletes to the list, its 11 players behind only soccer’s 38 and basketball’s 13.

Other golfers on the list were Phil Mickelson (No.5), Tiger Woods (No.10), Rory McIlroy (No.14), Jordan Spieth (No.17), Dustin Johnson (No.43), Sergio Garcia (No,.58), Rickie Fowler (No.62), Justin Rose (No.73) and Bubba Watson (No.94).

Not surprisingly, soccer megastars Cristiano Ronaldo (No.1), Lionel Messi (No.3) and Neymar (No.7) were all in the top 10. LeBron James was the top hoopster in the elite bracket at No.2, although fellow NBA finals participants Kevin Durant was at No.8 and Steph Curry at No.11.

Tennis legends Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal were at No.3 and No.9, respectively, while the only “traditional Olympic” athlete in the top echelon was scintillating runner Usain Bolt at No.7.

Ronda Rousey was the top-ranked female on the list with the UFC fighter at No.16, with fellow American Serena Williams at No.19 two of just eight women in the list, with four of those tennis players.

Six of the eight NFL players on the list were quarterbacks, but only two (Tom Brady and Cam Newton) were in the top 50. Tellingly, there were no baseball or ice hockey players on the list, despite their capacity to impact the criteria through MLB and NHL contracts and exposure.

Outside the 35 athletes from the United States, Brazil (9), Germany (7), England (5), Spain (4) and India (4) – all four cricketers with skipper Virat Kohli the highest at No.13 – were the countries represented most often.

ESPN arrived at the list via use of a formula that combines endorsements with social media following and internet search popularity.

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