There has been no Olympic Games, no World Cup, no Tour de France and not even a Commonwealth Games.
But 2013 has still been a memorable and successful year for our sportsmen and women, whether they are individual stars like golfer Matthew Fitzpatrick, or teams such as the all-conquering Sheffield Hatters. Here, we take a look back on the last 12 months of sporting action.
It was back in April when Sheffield Hallam’s hockey side gained promotion to the NOW: Pensions Men’s Premier Division, along with Wimbledon. Hallam later lost star man Phil Roper to Wimbledon, but saw the Olympic 2012 ‘Smurf Turf’ installed at Abbeydale. They will be looking for a better 2014, however, having won only one game this season. Sheffield Bankers, too, are well-placed for promotion next season with Aussie ace Chuck Inglis leading their charge.
The last rugby season ended with Sheffield fifth in the North One East table, but they have found life a lot tougher this term and currently lie bottom. Across the city Sheffield Tigers, a team also more used to life towards the top of National 2 North, are in relegation trouble, too.
Sheffield’s Joe Root will end 2013 as an Ashes winner - but also as part of the England team humbled Down Under this winter. The Collegiate product was one of the few English batsmen to emerge with any credit, however, hitting 87 in the second Test. Root set up one of England’s victories in a 3-0 summer win, with a magnificent 180 at Lord’s.
Amateur Mitchell Travis exploded on the scene, beating world number six Marco Fu in the UK Championship. He, Adam Duffy and Joel Walker will fly the city’s snooker flag in 2014 - with qualifiers for the World Championships held at Ponds Forge in April.
City trio James Woods, James Machon and Katie Summerhayes have spent the latter part of the year hard at work, training for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi while skeleton stars Shelley Rudman and Kristan Bromley will be hoping to bring home a medal from Russia.
Sheffield Tigers, under captain Simon Stead, will hope for a better year after a second-bottom finish in the 2013 Premier League Table.
The New Year can’t come quick enough for Kell Brook, as the Sheffield boxer counts down to a world welterweight title fight against Shawn Porter. Brook became the mandatory challenger for the title after beating Vyacheslav Senchenko in their IBF eliminator fight. Porter set up the fight by beating Devon Alexander, who Brook was twice scheduled to fight earlier this year before injuries - on both sides - scuppered any possible deal.
Sharks returned to the winners circle with victory in the BBL Trophy final in Glasgow last season and look strong contenders to add more silverware during the current campaign. And the Hatters continued to pile up the trophies with a clean sweep of all competitions last season.
What a year for Sheffield’s Nick Matthew. The 33-year-old ends 2013 as World No 1 after winning the World Championship for the third time in his career and also picking up a first Hong Kong Open title. Matthew’s victories were all dwarfed by his biggest match, though, as he married fiancée Esme in June. To also prove his worth as a team player, Matthew led England to World Team Championships glory.
Sheffield Volleyball Club’s women’s team finish the year top of Division Two North while Sheffield Hallam men’s team are fourth in the Super 8’s table - the top level of English volleyball.
Jonny Marray had a solid first season as part of the ATP World Tour. The highlight was a quarter-final appearance at the US Open in New York with partner Colin Fleming. Marray will have a new teammate for 2014 with Paul Hanley replacing Fleming, who returns to the healthy again Ross Hutchins. Anna Fitzpatrick found the balance between studying at university and playing tennis to finish top of the British Tour rankings.
Something of a frustrating year for golden girl Jessica Ennis-Hill, who missed out on the World Championships due to an ankle injury. The Olympic gold medallist became double-barrelled after marrying long-time partner Andy Hill in May. Former Sheffield Wednesday Academy player Mukhtar Mohammed made his senior breakthrough with an 800m bronze medal at the European Indoor championship in March.
Sheffield will welcome the Tour de France’s second stage on July 6 2014 and it’s hoped Dronfield’s Adam Blythe will be part of the peloton. Blythe had a strong opening to 2013 but faded towards the end of the year and will be part of the British-based NFTO Pro Cycling for next year after leaving American giants BMC Racing.
Hallamshire Golf Club’s Matthew Fitzpatrick shot to prominence with a series of brilliant displays. The 19-year-old won the Silver Medal as the top amateur player at this summer’s Open Championship at Muirfield before finishing runner-up in the English Amateur Championship. However, Fitzpatrick went one better across The Pond as he became the first English player since 1911 to win the US Amateur Championship in August to become the World No 1 ranked amateur player. The former Tapton school student was also part of the Great Britain and Ireland Walker Cup team before starting a golf scholarship at Northwestern University in Chicago. Meanwhile in the professional game, the city’s Danny Willett finished 15th in The Open and showed that he’s developing into an excellent Tour player for the coming year.
It was a brilliant year for City of Sheffield Swimming Squad. Ellie Faulkner led the way by being part of the Great Britain team at the World Championships in Barcelona but the form of Nick Grainger, Lewis Coleman, Rebecca Turner, Matthew Johnson, Izzy Grant and Max Litchfield among others bodes well for a strong effort in 2014.
After a trophyless 2013 the beginning of the 13-14 season hasn’t gone the way any Sheffield Steelers fan would have hoped. With early season injuries to top forwards Maxime Lacroix, Robert Dowd and Jeff Legue and star D man Dustin Kohn only playing half of the games to date, 2014 can only be a better year for head coach Doug Christiansen and the club.
The highs and lows of sport are perfectly summed up by the Sheffield Eagles. Champions for the second year in a row of the Championship’s Grand Final, the Eagles found themselves homeless after the closure of Don Valley Stadium. Mark Aston’s team will kick off the 2014 campaign back where it all began, at Owlerton Stadium, as they aim for a historic three-in-a-row.