Happy Birthday: Silva, Cruden, Hazlewood

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We look at the sporting stars born January 8.

The Spaniard gave another reminder why he’s nicknamed ‘The Wizard’ with a superb performance in Manchester City’s 5-0 triumph over West Ham in their FA Cup third-round clash on Friday.

Turning 31 today, Silva had started his career as a goalkeeper before becoming a winger after being inspired by Michael Laudrup.

It was at Valencia, he began to make a name for himself due to his passing ability and possession retaining qualities, scoring 21 goals in more than 150 appearances in his homeland.

His potential caught the eye of City and moved to the Etihad in 2010.

In England, he has gone from strength to strength, winning two league titles and League Cups.

For Spain, he’s one of 11 players to have more than 100 caps, playing 109 times. He was part of the squads to win the 2010 World Cup and Euros in 2008 and 2012.

Other notable stars include:

1972: Paul Clement, former assistant at PSG, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich. Now new manager of Swansea (45).

1989: Aaron Cruden, rugby player who plays as a fly-half for the All Blacks (28).

1992: Koke, Spanish footballer for Atletico Madrid and a Euro 2013 Under-21 winner (25).

1991: Josh Hazlewood, an Australian medium-pacer, who has seven five-wicket hauls in international cricket (26).

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On this day, 1984: Redknapp behind FA Cup shock

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The magic of the FA Cup for Harry.

Harry Redknapp has become synonymous with English football management, gaining wide-ranging fame at clubs such as West Ham United, Portsmouth and Tottenham Hotspur.

The first sighter of the Cockney’s magic touch came on this day 33 years ago as then Third Division Bournemouth knocked out FA Cup holders Manchester United in the third round of the competition.

Aged just 36 at the time, little was expected of both Redknapp and his club during the tie. Milton Graham’s effort from a corner and Ian Thompson’s predatory shot would soon change that against a team packed with star names.

The result is still considered one of the tournament’s biggest shocks.

Here are some other memorable events that happened on this day:

1947: Australia v England ends in stalemate at the MCG, for the first cricket draw Down Under since 1882.

1961: Detroit edges Cleverland 17-16 in the NFL’s first Playoff Bowl.

1992: Pakistan legend Imran Khan played his last day of Test cricket, helping Pakistan to beat Sri Lanka.

2013: Argentina and Barcelona forward Lionel Messi wins the Ballon d’Or for the third-consecutive year.

Lionel Messi.

Hat-trick: Messi with the award again.

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On this Day in 1984: Chappell, Lillee and Marsh

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On this day, 33 years ago, three Australian greats played their final day of Test cricket at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

The Australian team bade farewell to Dennis Lillee, Greg Chappell and Rodney Marsh, leaving a massive a void within their ranks and one they struggled to fill for the next few years.

Thus, one of the finest triumvirates in sporting history made their final bow.

Chappell was the first to announce his retirement into the second day of the Test against Pakistan. Lillee had already decided to quit as well and followed suit 24 hours later.

During the celebrations after the match, Marsh also admitted that he had played his final Test. When asked why he replied, “Because all my mates have gone.”

1937: Donald Bradman scores 270 Australia versus England at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, including 110 singles.

1980: Philadelphia Flyers set NHL record of 35 straight games without a defeat.

1992: Sachin Tendulkar completes 148 versus Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

1994: Yat Weiju swims world record 50m butterfly stroke (26.44).

1998: Don Sutton selected to Baseball Hall of Fame.

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