No Australian athletes cracked the ESPN World Fame 100, which lists the most famous stars in world sport.
The rundown of active sportsmen and women is compiled by judging three criteria: an athlete's social media following, their Google Trend score and the amount of money that they bring in through endorsement deals. For the fourth year running, Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo took the crown as the world's most famous sporting icon.
But who makes it into Australia-only top 10? Here are the results:
1. Ben Simmons, basketball
Ben Simmons' star continues to rise in the NBA while his popularity surges at home in Australia. The 2018 NBA Rookie of the Year has helped drive Philadelphia 76ers to fourth place in the Eastern Conference standings [as at 10/3/19], compiling an impressive individual highlight reel and a maiden All-Star appearance along the way. Simmons is poised to sign a mammoth contract over the summer as he wrestles with the decision of whether to play for Australia in the FIBA World Cup.
"He's got to get a jump shot. It sounds stupid and all that but I'm dead-ass serious. Because if not, he will regret it when his career is over." Kobe Bryant on Ben Simmons' shooting issues. [Via Herald Sun]
2. Jason Day, golf
Jason Day remains Australia's highest ranked golfer at No. 11 in the world. He managed to pick up two PGA titles in 2018, taking his total to 12, as well finishing in the Top 20 at three of last year's four Majors. The down to earth and completely likable Aussie continues to fight the occasional bout of vertigo as he looks to return to the top of the golfing world.
"I know how hard I work, and I'm trying to win as many tournaments and majors as I can for me and my team, but I know one day I'm gonna be gone and forgotten." - Day on his legacy when compared to the greats of the game.
3. Nick Kyrgios, tennis
If one match encapsulated the perplexing career of Nick Kyrgios, you only need to look back to his crazy win against world No. 2 Rafael Nadal at the Mexican Open in February this year. During the first set, Kyrgios, with both knees taped, didn't appear to be giving 100 percent and even flirted with pulling out of the match after a medical timeout. He played on, attempted an underarm serve, was booed by the crowd, clashed with Nadal over time-wasting ... and then saved three match points in winning 3-6, 7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (8-6). It was his best result in almost two years.
"He doesn't know the journey I've been through. He doesn't know anything about me so I'm not going to listen at all." - Nick Kyrgios, responding to Rafael Nadal's claims that the Australian "lacks respect for the crowd, his opponent and towards himself".
4. Daniel Ricciardo, F1
When it comes to likeability and popularity, Daniel Ricciardo sits head and shoulders above his Formula One rivals. The happy-go-lucky racer drove the wheels of his Red Bull in Monte Carlo last year to win the most prestigious motorsport race in the world: The Monaco Grand Prix. He is one of only four Australians in history to win a Formula One race.
"Sometimes you've just got to lick the stamp and send it." - Ricciardo summing up the overtaking clinic he put on to win the 2018 Chinese Grand Prix.
5. David Warner, cricket
Always one to push himself, the rules and the spirit of cricket to the limits, there was lashings of schadenfreude when Warner (and captain Steve Smith) was banned for a year for the bizarre plan of
rubbing sandpaper on the ball during the Newlands Test against South Africa. It was one of the biggest dramas in the history of the sport, and highlighted significant cultural issues within the Australian men's set-up. As the main architect of the ball-tampering plan and one of the most divisive athletes in world cricket, Warner's possible reintegration into the Aussie fold from March 29 will be fascinating to watch.
"I literally stayed up until 1.30 in the morning to watch him cry live on TV. What a pleasure that was." - Former England cricketer Matt Prior on Warner's press conference after the ball-tampering affair.
6. Dustin Martin, Australian rules football
Few AFL fans would argue Dustin Martin is not the best and most intimidating player in the competition. Easily identifiable with his slew of tattoos, the Richmond midfielder was the catalyst in the Tigers' drought-breaking 2017 premiership triumph. That week, Martin became the first player in history to win a Grand Final, Norm Smith Medal (best player in the Grand Final) and Brownlow Medal (the AFL's best and fairest) in the space of six days.
"It's easy to make big statements, but no player has ever had as good a year as Martin [in 2017]. He's the ultimate don't judge a book by his cover." - AFL legend Leigh Matthews on Martin's incredible 2017 campaign.
7. Glenn Maxwell, cricket
He can't get a game in the Test side but Glenn Maxwell remains must-watch television in cricket's shorter forms. "The Big Show" has an array of unique attacking shots, a batsman as creative as they come, while also offering handy overs with the ball. Maxwell was at his destructive best in India at the end of February, smashing an unbeaten 113 as Australia swept their two T20 games with Virat Kohli's side. He also took home the award as Australia's T20 Player of the Year earlier in the year.
"I just think he is the x-factor in our batting line up ... he's going to win us a couple of games. And those couple of games might be a semifinal, final." - Former Australian captain Allan Border on Maxwell's World Cup role.
8. Lance Franklin, Australian rules football
Unparalleled longevity at an elite level of performance is the best way to sum up Lance Franklin. The 32-year-old has been the AFL's benchmark key forward for over a decade, winning four Coleman Medals (most goals in a season) along with two premierships at his first club Hawthorn. His move to Sydney in 2014 saw him become the first AFL player in history to sign a multi-year, multi-million-dollar contract.
"Certainly he's the most exciting player in the game, no doubt about that. He's a game changer. Not too many guys can be a game changer." - AFL legend Kevin Bartlett speaking about Franklin.
9. Johnathan Thurston, rugby league
Arguably one of the greatest players to ever take the rugby league field, Johnathan Thurston hung up his boots at the end of the 2018 season. During a career spanning 17 years he was an integral part of Queensland's State of Origin dominance as well as leading his North Queensland Cowboys to their maiden NRL (National Rugby League) premiership. Along the way Thurston collected a staggering four Dally M Medals for the NRL's best player, as well as world recognition with three Golden Boot Awards.
"I'm proud of what I achieved on the field but even more so off it. It's been a pleasure. I'm happy that it happened. I've enjoyed every moment of it. I can't thank the game of rugby league enough for the life it's given me." - Thurston reflects on his career.
10. Bernard Tomic, tennis
Bernard Tomic's controversial career took yet another turn at this year's Australian Open after he accused tennis great and Davis Cup captain Lleyton Hewitt of verbal threats during a Davis Cup tie when Tomic was still a teenager. Tomic also claimed "nobody liked" Hewitt and the two-time major champion was playing favourites with other Australian players. On the court, Tomic's ranking sits at No. 82 after dropping as low as 243 in 2018.
"I did message him [Hewitt], threatening, I said exact words I said was, 'if you come one metre from me I will knock you out'." - Tomic said in confirming he had given Hewitt the full serve