World Sports Hall of Fame 1919: Alberto Braglia, James Braid, Fanny Durack and Jack Johnson

As much of the competitive sport in the world came to a halt during the First World War it is difficult to find suitable candidates for the Halls of Fame for that period.  For that reason I have decided to move straight from 1914 to 1919 for my next choices. Here are my first four picks after World War I

Alberto Braglia (Italy – Gymnastics)

The first man two win two all-round titles in Olympic gymnastics, which he did in 1908 and 1912.  This feat was unmatched for over forty years. He also won an Olympic gold medal in the team competition.

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James Braid (England – Golf) – the first man to win the Open five times, which he did between 1901 and 1910. He also finished second four times and third twice. Renowned for his prodigious driving length. He won the PGA Matchplay title four times.

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Fanny Durack (pictured on the right above) (Australia-Swimming) – won the Olympic 100m title in 1912. She was the greatest female swimmer of the 1910s. She held the world record for 100m from 1912 to 1920 and for 220 yards from 1915 to 1921.

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Jack Johnson (USA – Boxing) – although he was still active well past 1919 his top-flight career was behind him at this point.  One of the most important figures in boxing history. He was the first African American to become world heavyweight champion, a title he held from 1908 to 1915. Between 1902 and his loss of the title Johnson lost only two of 57 fights.

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