While the football world mourns the death of one of its greatest ever, Pele, he is one of many sportspersons that breathed their last in 2022.
Here, we take a look back at the sportspersons we lost and pay tribute to them.
Rod Marsh, 4 November 1947 - 4 March 2022
The former Australian wicketkeeper was viewed as "a colossal figure in Australian cricket" during his decades-long association with the game.
Marsh suffered a heart attack and died in an Adelaide hospital, aged 74.
One of Test cricket's greatest-ever wicketkeepers and a more than handy batter, Marsh played 96 Tests for Australia between 1970 and 1984, snaring 355 dismissals – a world record at the time – and posting three Test hundreds.
Marsh was a household name alongside the likes of Dennis Lillee, Jeff Thomson and the Chappell brothers, and a hugely popular member of Australia's successful side of the 1970s,
He is survived by his wife Ros and children Paul, Dan and Jamie.
Shane Warne, 13 September 1969 - 4 March 2022
Shane Warne's death shocked sports fans across the world in March.
Warne was with friends at a resort in Koh Samui when he was found unresponsive in his villa. The group of mates performed CPR before an ambulance took him to hospital where he was pronounced dead.
"Shane was found unresponsive in his villa and despite the best efforts of medical staff he could not be revived," Warne's management confirmed in a statement.
Described as Australia's finest cricketer since Sir Donald Bradman, and arguably the greatest bowler of all time Warne was loved and admired by cricket fans across generations.
Warne took 708 Test wickets for Australia, bettered only by Sri Lankan legend Muttiah Muralitharan in the record books.
Scott Hall, 20 October 1958 - 14 March 2022
Described as one of the most influential men in the history of professional wrestling, Hall, a two-time WWE Hall of Fame inductee, broke his hip and had severe health complications during surgery to repair it.
Nicknamed 'The Bad Guy', Hall was a founding member of the group that would go on to be called the New World Order (NWO).
Known as 'Razor Ramon' he left the WWF in 1996 to sign with rival organisation WCW, which triggered several other signings from WWF, during one of the hottest periods in pro wrestling.
Hall finished his 2014 Hall of Fame speech, with a line that was shared across social media in the aftermath of his death.
"Hard work pays off," Hall said. "Dreams come true. Bad times don't last. But bad guys do."
He was 63.
Andrew Symonds, 9 June 1975 - 14 May 2022
Australian cricket great Andrew Symonds died in a car crash in mid-May, leaving a huge hole in the Australian cricket community following the unexpected deaths of Shane Warne and Rod Marsh.
Symonds was the only person travelling in the car, but his two dogs survived and wouldn't leave his side according to witnesses.
Known lovingly as 'Roy', Symonds was one of the best all-rounders to represent the country.
He played 26 Tests for Australia as well as 198 one-day internationals and 14 Twenty20 internationals.
He is survived by wife Laura, and children Chloe and Billy.
He was 46.
Bill Russell - February 12, 1934 - July 31, 2022
Bill Russell redefined how basketball is played, and then he changed the way sports are viewed in a racially divided country.
The most prolific winner in NBA history, Russell marched with Martin Luther King Jr, supported Muhammad Ali and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama. The centrepiece of the Boston Celtics dynasty that won 11 championships in 13 years, Russell earned his last two NBA titles as a player-coach — the first black coach in any major US sport.
Russell died at the age of 88. His family posted the news on social media, saying his wife, Jeannine, was by his side. The statement did not give the cause of death, but Russell was not well enough to present the NBA Finals MVP trophy in June due to a long illness.
Pele - October 23, 1940 - December 29, 2022
The Brazilian football icon is being remembered as arguably the best to ever play the game, after dying following a long battle with cancer at the age of 82.
Averaging almost a goal per game throughout his career, Pele was adept at striking the ball with either foot in addition to anticipating his opponents' movements on the field. While predominantly a striker, he could also drop deep and take on a playmaking role, providing assists with his vision and passing ability, and he would also use his dribbling skills to go past opponents.
Throughout the years, the legend of Pele continued to grow — so much so that in the late 1960s, the two factions in the Nigerian Civil War reportedly agreed to a 48-hour ceasefire so they could watch him play in an exhibition game in Lagos. Pelé was also known to be a fair and highly influential player, who stood out for his charismatic leadership and sportsmanship on the pitch. Pele went on to play for the New York Cosmos in the North American Soccer League after a brief retirement from the sport. He played his final game in an exhibition between New York and Santos in October 1977, competing for both sides. He retired with a total of 1,279 goals in 1,363 games, a Guinness World Record.