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A sporting history of 2013 in 10 objects

From Davy’s Mi Wadi to Robert Heffernan’s gold.

1. Rob Heffernan’s gold medal

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Pic: INPHO/Ian MacNicol

It’s not often you get what you deserve in sport but after a long career — often full of near misses — the Corkman took the top prize in the men’s 50k walk in Moscow.

2. Davy Fitz’s MiWadi

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If you’re looking for a hero in the stunning story of Clare’s All-Ireland SHC story, don’t bother with your Domhnall O’Donovans or Shane O’Donnells. This popular orange cordial is responsible for the Banner’s latest senior victory.

After the Munster semi-final defeat to Cork, Davy Fitzgerald invited the panel to his house for a clear-the-air meeting.

“I remember going down the street and buying the Mi Wadi orange and biscuits and all that and having them on the table when they came in and if Joe O’Connor, our sports scientist, knew I did that he’d be cracking with me,” he told reporters the day after the Rebels were beaten in the All-Ireland final replay.

Other orange drinks are available.

3. Dan Martin’s bike

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Pic: YORICK JANSENS/Belga/Press Association Images

The Irishman claimed a famous Tour de France stage win. Martin, of the Garmin team, came over the finish with his arms in triumph after beating Dane Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) in a two-up sprint to become the first Irishman to win a stage of the famous race since his uncle Stephen Roche in 1992.

4. Hawkeye’s blue screen of death

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Pic: INPHO/Donall Farmer

Is Hawkeye an object? There was controversy at Croke Park in August when the new software at GAA HQ was calibrated to the wrong setting. Limerick’s minors were left hard done by as Barry Nash’s score was wrongly chalked off by the technology.

5. The Women’s Six Nations trophy

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INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Ireland’s women’s rugby stars heaved their way into the public’s consciousness with a superb Grand Slam win in the Six Nations. The trophy then visited over 200 clubs, schools, universities, events and awards ceremonies here with an estimated 50 babies sitting in it for pictures. Seriously.

6. Simon Zebo’s sunglasses

A breakout year for the Munster back, Zebo won the internet with this lip-sync effort to Otis with Ireland team-mate Paddy Jackson. He jetted off from the national team’s American tour base for the Lions not long after.

YouTube: SuperSofa7

7. The Good Wall

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Wherever there was a TV or access to the often-unreliable RTÉ Player, this Second Captains Live concept split households. The introduction of one of my own personal heroes, Marcus O’Sullivan, was a widely unpopular development.

8.  The Christmas card BOD gave Gatty

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INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Brian O’Driscoll is reflecting on a year in which he finally won a Lions series. But he won’t be toasting tour boss Warren Gatland this new year. The Ireland legend was dropped, remarkably, for the final Test in Australia. When he admitted in a long interview with Shane Horgan on Sky that Gatland wouldn’t exactly be on his Christmas card list, a mini-furore blew up. Typically, BOD shimmied past any controversy by handing his former boss an early Christmas card when the Lions were honoured at Downing Street.

9. The ITV sofa

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Pic: INPHO/Donall Farmer

Okay, they actually left their London studio for a trip to San Sebastian on the day the deal with the FAI was done. But the set in which Martin O’Neill and Roy Keane forged a working relationship is too important to omit. You could also have had Adrian Chiles’ face and/or Ian Wright’s clownish guffaw.

10. Rory McIlroy’s swoosh

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(AP Photo/Manuel Salazar)

The Holywood man didn’t quite make a deal with the devil but he was happy to sign an eye-watering sponsorship deal with Nike… giving up the clubs which helped him win two majors. He endured an awful year but looks to be coming back into some form ahead of 2014.

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