10 sporting stars to look out for in 2023
With a host of major World Championships set to take place in 2023, we pick out 10 young stars who are best placed to take their respective sports by storm.
Funmi Fadoju (Netball)
Fast-rising Fadoju is at the forefront of a new wave of England netball stars. Named as a reserve for the Commonwealth Games in the summer, Fadoju subsequently starred in series against Uganda and Australia, and will play an integral role in her country’s 2023 World Cup bid.
Richard Mansell (Golf)
The 27-year-old Mansell enjoyed by far the best season of his career in 2022, missing just five cuts in 25 starts and qualifying for the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai for the first time, recording four top-10 finishes in the process.
— RICHARD MANSELL (@richardmansel14) December 21, 2022
Rehan Ahmed (Cricket)
The Leicestershire leg-spinner was fast-tracked into the Test squad for the winter tour of Pakistan at the age of just 18. Equally adept with red and white ball, and with a Championship century already on his CV, Ahmed is well-placed to continue to make waves next summer when the Ashes is the highlight.
Morgan Gannon (Rugby league)
The 19-year-old Gannon has made a meteoric rise since making his Leeds Rhinos debut in 2021 and his progress is set to continue under coach Rohan Smith. Originally a back-rower, Gannon has been training at stand-off, hinting at even more of an impact in Super League in 2023.
Maya Le Tissier (Football)
The 20-year-old defender joined Manchester United from Brighton in the summer and subsequently made her England debut in the 1-1 draw with Norway in Murcia in November. Le Tissier is set to be part of the Lionesses squad for next year’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
Henry Arundell (Rugby union)
Arundell marked his international emergence by scoring a stunning solo try in the first Test against Australia in July. The London Irish wing sensation is recovering from a foot injury but is set to be central to the thinking of Eddie Jones’ Twickenham replacement Steve Borthwick.
Jack Draper (Tennis)
Draper has continued to progress since his stunning arrival in the big time in 2021, when he reached the quarter-finals at Queen’s Club then took a set off Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon. Currently a career-high 42, Draper also reached the NextGen semi-finals in October.
Joe O’Connor (Snooker)
O’Connor’s first ranking final appearance at the Scottish Open in December may have ended in a crushing 9-2 defeat to Gary Wilson, but the Leicester 27-year-old earned gushing praise from Ronnie O’Sullivan and looks best placed among the sport’s few under-30s to make an impression.
Keely Hodgkinson (Athletics)
After clinching a trio of high-profile silver medals including world and Olympic silvers behind the brilliant Athing Mu, the 20-year-old 800-metre star is looking to ascend to the top step of the podium in 2023, culminating in the World Championships in Budapest in August.
Caroline Dubois (Boxing)
Since turning professional in the wake of the Tokyo Olympics, Dubois – sister of heavyweight contender Daniel – has wasted no time, racking up four wins and already starting to call out Irish superstar Katie Taylor. The 21-year-old is set to accelerate further through 2023.