The Most Famous Sports Trophies in the World

Bryson DeChambeau of the United States celebrates with the championship trophy after winning the 120th U.S. Open Championship on September 20, 2020

For professional athletes and sports fans alike, there isn’t a more thrilling sight than the victors of a championship holding aloft a highly contested sports trophy. Online sports bettingfans are doubly thrilled when their team is finally awarded the silverware at the close of a season, especially when they’ve placed a futures bet on them! No matter what the sport is, trophies and medals symbolize all the hardwork and sacrifice made by athletes, many of whom have imagined themselves holding one of the cool trophies offered in their particular sport. So, let’s look at some of the best-known symbols of elite sporting prowess.

Tennis

Novak Djokovic holding the Wimbledon Championship Trophy at Wimbledon July 2019

Wimbledon Championship Trophy

The championship held at Wimbledon, southwest London, is one of four Grand Slam tennis major tournaments held every year and the only major played on grass. Presented at the All England Club, which closely guards its famous traditions (all-white tennis gear, strawberries and cream, and old-fashioned forms of address like Mr, Mrs, and Ms,) the tournament has perhaps one of the best known of all sports trophies.The Wimbledon Championship trophy is made of silver gilt, with a pineapple design on the lid. It stands 18in high and has a diameter of 7.5in. The inscription reads: “The All England Lawn Tennis Club Single Handed Championship of the World.” The dates and names of the champions are engraved around the bowl, including the tennis greats Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Pete Sampras, Boris Becker, and the unforgettable John McEnroe. By 2009, there was no more space to engrave winners’ names, so a black plinth and silver band was designed to accompany the cup. Of course, with only one cup to go around, champions never get to take home one of the oldest trophies in sport (it was first awarded 1887,) so they’re given a three-quarter-size (13.5in) replica, listing the names of past champions.

Football

Travis Kelce of Kansas City Chiefs celebrates with the Vince Lombardi Trophy at Hard Rock Stadium February 2020

Vince Lombardi Trophy

Named after the legendary NFL coach Vince Lombardi, who led the Green Bay Packers to five NFL titles in seven years, this trophy is awarded to the winners of the Super Bowl. A brand new trophy is crafted for each NFL season, even though it costs a staggering $50,000 to make and takes around four months to complete. Without doubt, one of the most famous sports trophies in the world, the Vince Lombardi top season award is made by Tiffany & Co, and stands at 22in tall and weighs 7lbs. Interestingly, the trophy for the 1967 Super Bowl was designed by Tiffany & Co’s Vice President, Oscar Reidner, on a napkin in 1966! 

Basketball

Kawhi Leonard of Toronto Raptors celebrates with the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy at NBA Finals June 2019

Larry O’Brien NBA Championship Trophy

Another trophy made by Tiffany & Co, the Larry O’Brien NBA Championship trophy has been celebrated as a beautiful piece of design for the past 40 years. The trophy is 2ft tall and made from 16lbs of sterling silver with a 24-carat gold overlay. One of the most beautiful trophies in sports, it resembles a life-size basketball falling into a net, and is awarded to the champions at each year’s NBA Finals.

Soccer

The FIFA World Cup Trophy during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Final between July 2018

FIFA World Cup

Of all trophies and awards, the FIFA World Cup, made of 18-carat gold, was designed by the Italian sculptor Silvio Gazzaniga, and is worth an estimated $20 million. Every four years, it is awarded to the team that wins the Soccer World Cup Final. The trophy is approximately 14.5in tall and weighs a hefty 13.5lbs. The design resembles two athletes raising their arms in victory while holding up the world. When a country wins the Soccer World Cup, their name is engraved on this prestigious trophy’s base. Currently, Brazil has the most FIFA World Cup victories.

UEFA Champions League trophy

Considered the most decorated club cup in history, the sterling-silver UEFA Champions League trophy is 29in tall and weighs an incredible 16.5lbs, making it one of the biggest trophies in the world of soccer. The current silverware is the fifth version of the cup, and was commissioned by UEFA General Secretary Hans Bangerter after Real Madrid were allowed to keep the second one in 1967.

Hockey

T.J. Oshie of Washington Capitals hoists the Stanley Cup during the 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Final

Stanley Cup

Hockey’s Stanley Cup is the oldest championship trophy that’s still awarded to a professional sports team. In 1892, the former aide of the governor-general of Canada, Lord Stanley, bought a punch bowl from a silversmith in London to reward the top hockey club in Canada. Initially, the cup stood at 7in and was about 1ft in diameter. Over the years, tiered rings were attached to the bottom of the bowl, followed by long narrow bands, and lastly, uneven bands were added where the names of every winning team are inscribed. It’s common for bands to be removed to make room for new champions. Today, the huge trophy is nearly 3ft tall and weighs more than 34lbs, which has got to be one of the heaviest ever raised aloft!

Rugby

Siya Kolisi of the Springboks and Rassie Erasmus Springboks coach at OR Tambo International Airport in November 2019

Webb Ellis Cup trophy

The Rugby World Cup is one of the most watched global sporting competitions in the world, and the trophy is just as iconic as this prestigious tournament. Two official Webb Ellis Cups are used interchangeably. The first is a 1906 trophy made by Carrington & Co of London with a Victorian design of a 1740s cup by Paul de Lamerie. The second cup is a 1986 replica. The gilded silver trophies are 15in tall — a similar size to the FIFA World Cup trophy – and have two cast scroll handles. On the face and below the arch of the trophy, the words “International Rugby Football Board” and “The Webb Ellis Cup” are engraved respectively. 

Interestingly, this cup, like the Wimbledon Championship Trophy, also sports a pineapple design on the lid. This is because in the 17th century it was impossible to grow pineapples in the UK climate, so they had to be imported at significant cost. Being presented with a pineapple at a feast was seen as a great compliment!

Golf

Phil Mickelson holding up the Wanamaker Trophy after winning the 87th PGA Championship August 2005

The Wanamaker trophy

This trophy is awarded to the PGA Championship winner, and is named after Rodman Wanamaker, the founder of the Professional Golfers’ Association in America. The cup has been around since 1916 and has come to be one of the most famous trophies. This is all thanks to Wanamaker, who contributed $2,500 of his own money toward the prize fund, and ordered a silver cup to be awarded to the victorious golfer. The trophy stands at 28in tall, is 10.5in in diameter, and 27in from handle to handle, and weighs 27lbs.

The Ryder Cup

The Ryder Cup is considered golf’s most prestigious trophy, and is named after Samuel Ryder, who donated the cup in 1926. It is a gold-colored chalice, 17in tall, 9in wide (handle to handle,) and weighs 4lbs. It was designed by Mappin & Webb, and the figure on top of the trophy is said to represent the British golfer, Abe Mitchell. The wooden base has the engraved scores of each Ryder Cup winner.

The US Open Championship Trophy

One of the oldest most storied majors in golf has a trophy to match. The US Open trophy is 18in tall and made of sterling silver. The winner of the US Open not only receives the award, but gets to keep it for a year. The trophy is given to the greatest players in the world on one of the world’s finest golf courses, Torrey Pines Golf Course.

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