Snappy Christmas! Our photographers choose their favourite pictures of the year
18:01 GMT, 25 December 2012
18:01 GMT, 25 December 2012
Sportsmail's group of top photographers, Andy Hooper, Kevin Quigley, Ian Hodgson and Graham Chadwick, have thought long and hard about their favourite photos of the year. Enjoy their selections below.
Oscar and Anthony: Yes, this really happened. Oscar Pistorius is kneeling down in front of a cheetah in the South African bush near Pretoria. Bladerunner Oscar was as good as gold, maybe a little nervous, but he was happy to crouch for a few seconds, which is all it took to get the shot.
Mo-mentous: Mo Farah wins his second Olympic gold medal in the 5,000 metres, fighting off attack after attack from the Kenyans and the other Africans. One of my special moments, as Mo kicked on and made the victory look easy!
Pure gold: Katherine Copeland and Sophie Hosking after winning the lightweight double sculls, one of my favourite London 2012 images. It looks close up but they had drifted way past us before celebrating.
Lone rider: All of these were taken using a range of Nikon cameras and lenses and with Mark Cavendish, I shot this in Fairlop in east London, with the backdrop a London sunset. I used one outside studio light positioned to the left of me which lit him up as he came up this slight incline and it’s the favourite shot I’ve taken this year.
Blue is the colour: Chelsea’s Didier Drogba was running round the Munich pitch with the European Cup when he suddenly sat down in the goalmouth. With a wide-angle lens I captured Didier, the trophy and all of the drama around him.
Pure Poults: I stood to the side of the other photographers who were shooting straight on with flash, and as Ian Poulter celebrated with the Ryder Cup at Medinah my camera picked up someone else’s flash to put a nice light on him.
Zlat’s magic (left): The shirt’s off as Zlatan Ibrahimovic goes wild after his acrobatic fourth goal for Sweden against England in their Stockholm friendly. Just for the perfect execution of his skills, it was unquestionably the best goal that I have seen live. I will remember it for ever.
Joyous: Jade Jones winning gold in the 57kg taekwondo final was simply spine-tingling, especially the second when she jumped up to celebrate with her coach. This image rewarded my long hours spent covering the Games.
Spinning gold: For American Gabrielle Douglas’s winning beam routine I wanted to create a dramatic stage for her dismount in this image. I used a starburst filter on the lens to accentuate the arena spotlights. I was also lucky to catch a lone flash from someone else’s camera in the crowd.
City turns blue: On the day Manchester City won the title I moved to the right hand side of the press pen to get a better angle. Streamers were fired into the air but I stayed focused on the trophy to create an almost abstract-style photograph.
One to treasure: I was covering the Open at Lytham and on one of the practice days, Justin Rose had been signing autographs on the tee. A few children had not got his signature but as he reached the green he waved them over. Nice gesture and a lovely picture.
Knight of Old Trafford: I’d photographed Sir Bobby Charlton on many occasions, but to have the time to shoot a portrait with the Manchester United legend one-to-one was something special for me. After setting up my lights (three on this shoot), I shot a variety of pictures, with this one as my favourite.