The Rundown

Top 10 funniest sporting videos of 2011

The Rundown

We always do our best to bring you the funniest and most amazing sporting videos to be found on the internet.

And with cameraphones and camcorders ever more popular, 2011 witnessed a bumper crop of clips. Here's our pick of the best.

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Teenager teaches cow to showjump

An enterprising German schoolgirl who couldn't afford a horse has taken up showjumping on a cow.

Fifteen-year-old Regina Mayer refused to let her showjumping dream die when her mother and father told her they weren't able to find the cash to buy her a horse.

Instead, she decided to teach one of the cows on her parents' farm in Laufen how to jump.

It took two years of cajoling, caressing and bribery, but now Regina takes her cow Luna on long rides around the countryside and over obstacles as if she were a lithe polo pony rather than a prize Hereford.

"It's a lot of work, but I enjoy it," said Regina, explaining that she regularly grooms and pets her cow. "She thinks she's a horse!"

'Dolphin man' denied record despite amazing swim

American swimmer Hill Taylor stunned the crowd at a university event by completing the 50m backstroke in an astonishing 23.1 seconds - almost a second faster than the world record.

But the University of Texas star was denied a place in the record books since he swam the entire race under water, breaching rules that limit backstroke contestants to swimming no more than the first 15m of the race beneath the surface.

The rule restriction is due to the fact that swimmers can move much more quickly under water. They can take advantage of the superior hydrodynamics of the so-called "streamline" position, in which they point both hands dead ahead, tuck their heads into their collarbone and kick both legs in unison.

Taylor was well aware of the regulation, but decided to show off his skills in any case for the sake of bragging rights - and also to the delight of the crowd.

The definitive, one and only, truly undeniable, worst miss of all time

A Brazilian footballer became a global laughing stock after his unbelievable miss took the internet by storm.

The player, who was taking part in a local league match in Brazil, appeared to have done all the hard work by latching onto a perfect long pass and cleverly playing the ball past the keeper.

The ball was speeding towards the goal already, but the striker wanted to emphasise his skill by running it up to the empty goal and blasting it in.

That's what his plan was, at any rate - but what happened next truly beggars belief.

Keeper's amazing penalty blunder costs his side promotion

An Italian goalkeeper cost his side promotion with an extraordinary blunder in a penalty shootout.

Loris Angeli, shot-stopper for Italian seventh-tier side Dro, was initially delighted when Termeno's Michael Palma sent his sudden death spot kick into the crossbar with the scores locked at 4-4.

Angeli ran over to his team-mates to celebrate, while Palma sank to his knees distraught at having missed the target.

But the referee was still watching attentively as the ball fell back to earth, loaded with backspin that somehow gave it just enough impetus to creep over the line.

The goal stood, and Dro's shellshock at the freak goal turned to misery as they missed the very next kick to send their opponents up.

The nine-year-old Japanese Messi mystery

The internet is abuzz about a new wonder-kid footballing talent in Japan — the trouble is nobody knows who he is!

A video of a "nine-year-old Japanese Messi" has gone viral, as people around the world are dazzled by this new talent who seems to be able to just skip around players with ease.

However as yet no details have emerged about who the young chap is or what team he plays for.

Watching the video though, you can see why the player is being compared to Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi as he shows amazing close control to dribble past opponents in a similar fashion to the pint-sized Argentine.

He has already attracted the attention of Messi's former coach at the Barcelona youth team - Francisco Javier García Pimienta — who posted a link to the video on his Twitter feed.

Motorcyclist cheats death at 190mph

A motorbike racer escaped with his life in incredible circumstances when he came within inches of being hit by a flying bike while travelling at nearly 190mph.

BMW rider Ferdi Schmarje was still on the first lap of the Swiss Road Racing Championship race in Hockenheim, Germany, when a crash up ahead at the high-speed Parabolica turn caused a bike to flip on to its end and be sent flying down the centre of the track.

As this astonishing on-board footage shows, Schmarje barely had time to react as several hundred kilograms of steel flew within inches of his bike and down the track.

Schmarje's fellow rider Mathias Rufer (riding the yellow bike visible on the left of the picture) was not quite so lucky: the stray bike just clipped him, giving him a badly broken toe and ruling him out for the rest of the season. Two other bikes further down the field were involved in a crash as they braked heavily to avoid a collision, but all escaped with nothing more than minor injuries.

"I didn't expect a bike crossing the track to the inside. Usually crashed bikes go to the outside of a corner," Rufer explained on tlzone.net. "Then everything went so damn quick... I had no time to be afraid or anything else, and immediately after the impact there was so much pain that I stopped and waited for the ambulance. I didn't try to get back to the pits. I knew for sure that this would be a red flag and that I couldn't restart."

Icelandic keeper's nightmare day goes global

Icelandic women's footballer Arna Lind Kristinsdóttir headed to the European U17 Championships hoping to get noticed across the world.

But the unfortunate goalkeeper ended up garnering the worst kind of fame after a miserable day between the sticks in a match against Spain that must represent one of the worst goalkeeping displays ever seen outside Sunday League.

The 17-year-old had shone in the group matches as Iceland made the semi-finals of the tournament in Nyon, France - but it all went horribly wrong when Kristinsdottir pulled on her jersey for the semi-final against Spain.

A shocking flap at a free-kick, an excruciating spill of a simple ball over the line and complicity in an unbelievable own goal saw Iceland go down 4-0 to be knocked out of the tournament.

It wasn't all bad news for her, however: after being dropped for the third place play-off, no doubt Kristinsdottir was ever so slightly pleased to see her replacement Unnbjorg Jona Omarsdottir ship an astonishing eight goals as Iceland lost 8-2 to Germany.

The longest headed goals of all time

In September, World of Sport brought you what was believed to be the longest headed goal ever recorded.

But Jone Samuelsen of Odd Grenland's record didn't last long: a month later Ryujiro Ued of J-League side Fagiano Okayama headed home a goal from 58 metres in a match against Yokohama FC at the weekend.

The goalkeeping was, er, 'questionable', but it does seem like Ued was just slightly further out than Samuelsen was, when the Norwegian's goal went viral.

Ryujiro Ued's goal

Jone Samuelsen's goal


Quick-thinking snowboarder saves life by riding huge avalanche

New Zealand's top snowboarder Maria Kuzma escaped with her life when she was caught up in an avalanche in Switzerland.

The 25-year-old - currently ranked fourth in the 2011 season standings - was snowboarding off-piste in Verbier during last week's event when an avalanche started beneath her.

At first she was caught up in the flow of thousands of tons of snow, but she somehow managed to get back upright and ride her way down to safety.

The luckiest goal of all time?

An Italian footballer scored a surefire contender for the flukiest goal of all time.

The mystery player was taking part in a reserve match when straight from kick-off he managed to dispossess an opponent and break towards goal.

But just as he was shaping to shoot, a boisterous challenge from behind robbed him of his balance - and he tripped over the ball.

As he fell to the floor, however, something incredible happened: the ball connected with his trailing heel and was sent on a perfect trajectory to lob the hapless keeper before bouncing into the net.

What the player did next was as outrageous as his luck: the shameless striker, who had been about to try and claim a penalty, leapt to his feet and began celebrating as if he'd meant to backheel it into the goal all along.

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