Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini and nine other sports stars who own university degrees

David Cooper 17/08/2017
The Shaq - a star on and off the court.

Thousands of students are receiving their A-level results up and down the UK on Thursday.

To mark the momentous day in the lives and careers for many young people, we’ve put a sporting spin on things.

Here, we look at 10 famous sports stars, from across various sports, who have studied at either college or university and gained a degree.

These 10 are clearly all-rounders when it comes to mixing education and sport.

An ex-England cricketer kicks us off…

ANDREW STRAUSS

The former England cricket captain studied at Hatfield College before attaining a 2:1 degree in economics from Durham University.

CHRISTINE OHURUOGU

Three years before winning a 400m gold medal for Great Britain at the Beijing Olympics, the 33-year-old graduated in linguistics in 2005 from the University College London.

SHAQUILLE O’NEAL

The American basketball legend was a student at Louisiana State University before pursuing his NBA career – and despite a few years away from the books – he returned in 2000 to complete his BA in general studies (after promising his mum he would.)

CHRIS HOY

The Scottish cyclist is one of the most celebrated athletes of all time having won six Olympic and 11 world championship gold medals. Away from the track, he studied a maths and physics degrees at the University of St Andrews.

VENUS WILLIAMS

The tennis legend and seven-time Grand Slam champion earned a BSc in Business Administration from Indiana University East in 2015.

GIORGIO CHIELLINI

Juventus star Giorgio Chiellini picked up his Masters degree in business administration from the University of Turin in April 2017.

SOCRATES

The legendary Brazil captain earned the nickname ‘Doctor Socrates’ given he is a qualified doctor and also owns a PHD degree in philosophy. Clever clogs.

MICHELLE KWAN

The most decorated American figure skater graduated from the University of Denver in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in international studies and political science. Kwan also attained a masters qualification in international relations from Tufts University in 2011.

KATHERINE GRAINGER

The Olympic rowing star has a law degree from Edinburgh University and also studied medical law and medical ethics at Glasgow University.

DEMIAN MAIA

The UFC welterweight star is combining his time in the cage with journalism studies at university.

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Usain Bolt and four of the best apt sporting names

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ANNA SMASHNOVA

The Soviet-born tennis player would have sent down a few smashes in her time, winning 12 WTA titles in her career.

DAMIEN TRAILLE

Don‘t let the French spelling fool you – Damien knew how to score a try. The centre crossed the try-line 14 times for France.

Damien Traille

Damien Traille

CHUCK LONG

The former NFL quarterback did not last very ’Long‘ in the league after being drafted by the Detroit Lions in 1986.

Chuck Long

Chuck Long

VANIA STAMBOLOVA

As a hurdler, the Bulgarian will have done her best to avoid stumbling over. She won a 400m European gold in 2006.

Vania Stambolova

Vania Stambolova

USAIN BOLT

… of course, no one in sport has a name more suited to his (former) profession than the world´s fastest man.

Usain Bolt

Usain Bolt

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Amir Fahmy does the UAE proud with second place finish at Cross Fit Games

Denzil Pinto 16/08/2017
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Amir Fahmy (second right).

An Abu Dhabi teenager admits he was taken by surprise after finishing second in the annual Reebok Cross Fit Games in the US earlier this month.

British-born Amir Fahmy, 15, became the only representative from the UAE to book his ticket to Madison, Wisconsin in the US for the finals after overcoming two intense regional qualifying rounds.

He was duly rewarded for his efforts by claiming silver in the Teen Boys (14-15) category, by winning 802 points, 68 adrift of champion Dallin Pepper.

Pitting himself against some of his peers to become the ‘Fittest teenager on Earth’, Fahmy and the other 19 finalists tackled 10 different challenges that tested their strength, agility and stamina over four gruesome days.

Swimming, weightlifting and rope climbing were just some of the obstacles Fahmy faced and he didn’t disappoint, achieving a top-five finish in seven out of the 10 events, including first position in the sprint and assault course.

“To be honest, to have finished second did surprise me a bit and it was only after the third day when I was placed in second position when it really hit that there was a strong possibility of finishing in the places,” said the Al Yasmina School pupil, who attended a month-long training camp in the UK and US prior to the competition.

“Before the competition began, I was just hoping to beat my score that I got in the Open qualifiers which was 14th best.”

He added: “To compete in the Reebok Cross Fit Games, and that too on the world stage, is something else. All the adrenaline and people cheering for you, gives you more motivation and makes you want to train 10 times harder so that you can perform better than an athlete.”

Since aged 10, Fahmy took an interest and now trains at CrossFit Yas-Vogue Fitness twice a day before and after school.

“I’ve always wanted to be active and not sit around playing video games or do the usual things that teenagers would do,” he said.

“After three to four years of training, I wanted to enter to see how I could do against the other best people around the world.”

Now having proved himself in the teens, he now has ambitions of replicating his success.

“I want to be a much fitter all-round athlete and be much better in running,” he said.

“My aim for the future now is to make the Cross Fit Games in the adults category.”

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