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Friday 22 August 2014

Five of the strangest things parents of sport stars have done

Published 19/11/2013 | 15:00

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After a 'touchline dad' tripped up a teenager just as he was about to score a try, we look at the antics of five parents of sports stars that caught the eye.

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Bert le Clos (father South African Olympic 200m butterfly gold medallist Chad)

Bert was plunged into the limelight last year during an emotional interview with the BBC's Clare Balding following his son's incredible victory over Michael Phelps in London.

Bert was seen celebrating in the crowd before joining the BBC's  Clare Balding for an interview.

While his son was being presented with his gold medal, Mr Le Clos told the BBC: ‘Unbelievable! Unbelievable! I’ve never been so pleased in my life.

"Look at him, he’s crying like me. I love you. Look at him! I love him."

Shane O'Donnell, Clare, celebrates after scoring his side's second goal with team-mate Padraic Collins, left
Shane O'Donnell, Clare, celebrates after scoring his side's second goal with team-mate Padraic Collins, left

Mary O'Donnell (Mother of All-Ireland final hat-trick hero Shane)

Mary's revelation that her son was "single" following his All-Ireland final replay heroics led to a lot of female attention for the hurling star.

She told Ryan Tubridy on the Late Late Show in the week following the famous win for the Banner that she regretted letting her son's relationship status slip.

On the Wednesday after the game, O'Donnell needed a garda escort from the field after a charity game because of the influx of fans.

"He's a full-blown celebrity now," joked fellow All-Ireland winner and close friend Podge Collins.

"As one of the lads says, he's the Bieber of hurling."

Lucien Harinordoquy (Father of France flanker Imanol)

Imanol Harinordoquy's father took his enthusiasm a little too far when he ran onto the pitch and tried to punch a Bayonne player during the Basque derby in 2011.

His son, who was playing for Biarritz, got involved in some fisticuffs and soon dad joined in.

Lucien Harinordoquy raced onto the pitch after his France international son had clashed with a pair of Bayonne players, and attempted to punch one of them - Jean-Jo Marmouyet - in the face.

Before he was able to make contact with Marmouyet, however, Harinordoquy snr was tackled by Bayonne fly-half Benjamin Boyet.

Walter Bartolli (Father of 2012 Wimbledon Ladies' champion Marion)

Walter and his daughter have had a strange relationship and never more so than during a third round game at Wimbledon.

After losing the first set of her  game with Flavia Pennetta, she exploded in a fit of frustration and anger, gesticulating wildly at her father, making it clear she wanted him to go away.

Walter Bartoli and his wife, Sophie, left Court 12 without further urging and watched the rest of the match on television in the players’ lounge.

Bartoli staged a comeback to win the game and this year won the Wimbledon Ladies title and shared emotional scenes with her proud father afterwards.

Jim Redmond (father of 1992 Olympic 400m semi-finalist Derek)

Derek Redmond and his father Jim created one of the most poignant moments of the modern Olympics at Barcelona 1992.

Redmond was a medal prospect coming into the games but will be forever remembered  for tearfully completing his 400m semi-final using his father as a crutch.

He pulled his hamstring in the middle of his 400m semi-final but instead of moving off to the side in disappointment he hopped and limped the rest of the race.

When it looked like he may collapse in the home straight, Derek's father Jim appeared from the crowd and they passed the finish line together.

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