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27th Oct 2015

Prepare to be blown away by the best sports photographs of the year so far

Stunning

SportsJOE

Being a sports photographer is a tough job.

You need plenty of patience as you wait for the right moment. But when that moment arrives the perfect sports photo requires speed of thought, imagination and flair to capture the moment.

But most of all you need talent.

Here are a selection of some of the best sports photos of the year so far. They are pretty spectacular.

The only way is down
Gary Hunt competes in the Men’s 27m High Diving Final at the World Championships in Russia in August. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

KAZAN, RUSSIA - AUGUST 05: Gary Hunt of Great Britain competes in the Men's 27m High Diving Final on day twelve of the 16th FINA World Championships at the Kanzanka River on August 5, 2015 in Kazan, Russia (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

You wouldn’t want to have a fear of heights
Austria’s Stefan Kraft takes off during the Ski Jumping World Cup in January. (Photo by Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty Images).

INNSBRUCK, AUSTRIA - JANUARY 04: (FRANCE OUT) Stefan Kraft of Austria takes 2nd place during the FIS Ski Jumping World Cup Vierschanzentournee (Four Hills Tournament) on January 04, 2015 in Innsbruck, Austria. (Photo by Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty Images)

You get his head, I’ll get his neck
Luke Charteris of Wales in action during the RBS Six Nations match between Italy and Wales. (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images)

ROME, ITALY - MARCH 21: Luke Charteris of Wales in action during the RBS Six Nations match between Italy and Wales at Stadio Olimpico on March 21, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images)

Walk this way
Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood throws his jacket in celebration against QPR in April. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images,)

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - APRIL 07: Tim Sherwood manager of Aston Villa throws his jacket in celebration as Christian Benteke of Aston Villa scores their first and equalising goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Queens Park Rangers at Villa Park on April 7, 2015 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images,)

Roaring success
Jamie Vardy celebrates scoring against West Brom during Leicester’s miraculous escape from relegation. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND - APRIL 11: Jamie Vardy of Leicester City celebrates scoring their third goal with team mates during the Barclays Premier League match between West Bromwich Albion and Leicester City at The Hawthorns on April 11, 2015 in West Bromwich, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Out of reach
Adam Federici of Reading stretches for the ball as he fails to stop a shot by Alexis Sanchez during the FA Cup semi final. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 18: Adam Federici of Reading stretches for the ball as he fails to stop a shot by Alexis Sanchez of Arsenal for their second goal during the FA Cup Semi Final between Arsenal and Reading at Wembley Stadium on April 18, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Head first
Ginger Huber of the USA dives from a 20 metre cliff in Portugal during the first round of the fifth stop of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series. (Photo by Dean Treml/Red Bull via Getty Images)

AZORES, PORTUGAL - JULY 17: (EDITORIAL USE ONLY) In this handout image provided by Red Bull, Ginger Huber of the USA dives from a 20 metre cliff during the first round of the fifth stop of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series on July 17, 2015 at Islet Franca do Campo, Azores, Portugal. (Photo by Dean Treml/Red Bull via Getty Images)

The name’s Paul
Irish amateur Paul Dunne plays out of a bunker at the Open Championship in St Andrew’s en route to announcing himself to the world. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

ST ANDREWS, SCOTLAND - JULY 19: Amateur Paul Dunne of Ireland plays out of a bunker on the 5th hole during the third round of the 144th Open Championship at The Old Course on July 19, 2015 in St Andrews, Scotland. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Money, money, money
Comedian Simon Brodkin (not pictured) throws dollar bills at FIFA President Sepp Blatter. (Photo by Philipp Schmidli/Getty Images)

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - JULY 20: Comedian Simon Brodkin (not pictured) throws dollar bills at FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter during a press conference at the Extraordinary FIFA Executive Committee Meeting at the FIFA headquarters on July 20, 2015 in Zurich, Switzerland. (Photo by Philipp Schmidli/Getty Images)

Shane’s the man
Shane Lowry of Ireland hits out of a bunker during the final round of the World Golf Championships. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

AKRON, OH - AUGUST 09: Shane Lowry of Ireland hits out of a bunker near the 11th green during the final round of the World Golf Championships - Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club South Course on August 9, 2015 in Akron, Ohio. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

Are you ‘avin’ a laugh?
Usain Bolt talks with Justin Gatlin after beating him in the 200m final of the IAAF World Athletics Championships. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

BEIJING, CHINA - AUGUST 27: Gold medalist Usain Bolt of Jamaica talks with silver medalist Justin Gatlin of the United States after the Men's 200 metres final during day six of the 15th IAAF World Athletics Championships Beijing 2015 at Beijing National Stadium on August 27, 2015 in Beijing, China. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Here’s Gommy!
Swansea striker Bafetimbi Gomis’ trademark celebration captured brilliantly. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

SWANSEA, WALES - AUGUST 30: Swansea striker Bafetimbi Gomis celebrates after scoring the second swansea goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Swansea City and Manchester United on August 30, 2015 in Swansea, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Serving up a storm
Sara Errani serves during the US Open. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 05: Sara Errani of Italy serves to Samantha Stosur of Australia during their Women's Singles Third Round match on Day Six of the 2015 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 5, 2015 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

Pride
Canada sing their national anthem before the pre-Rugby World Cup International Friendly match with Fiji. (Photo by Ker Robertson/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 06: (EDITORS NOTE: THIS IMAGE WAS CREATED FROM ORIGINAL COLOUR FILE) Canadian side sing their national anthem before the pre-Rugby World Cup International Friendly match between Fiji and Canada at Twickenham Stoop on September 6, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Ker Robertson/Getty Images)

Wrapped in a Bowe
Tommy Bowe gets to grips with Mike Brown at Twickenham. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 05: Tommy Bowe of Ireland tackles Mike Brown of England during the QBE International match between England and Ireland at Twickenham Stadium on September 5, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Charge
Runners and riders compete at the Laytown races during the one day annual meet on September 10. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

MEATH, IRELAND - SEPTEMBER 10: Runners and riders compete at the Laytown races during the one day annual meet on September 10, 2015 in Meath, Ireland. Laytown races held once a year and first raced in 1868 occupies a unique position in the Irish racing calendar as it is the only race event run on a beach under the Rules of Racing. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

All they need is an inch
Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers gets his pass away against the Jaguars. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

JACKSONVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 13: Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers passes during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field on September 13, 2015 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

The joy
Ireland’s Robbie Henshaw scores a try past Alex Goode as supporters rise to their feet. (Photo by INPHO/Colm O’Neill)

RBS 6 Nations Championship, Aviva Stadium, Dublin 1/3/2015 Ireland vs England Ireland's Robbie Henshaw scores a try despite Alex Goode of England Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Colm O'Neill

Two stories
Niamh Briggs of the victorious women’s team celebrates beaten Wales. (Photo by INPHO/Dan Sheridan)

RBS Women's Six Nations Championship, St Helen's, Wales 15/3/2015 Wales vs Ireland Ireland's Niamh Briggs celebrates Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

It’s mine
Conor McGregor takes Jose Aldo’s belt in Dublin. (Photo by INPHO/Cathal Noonan)

UFC 189 World Championship Tour, The Convention Centre Dublin 31/3/2015 Conor McGregor takes Jose Aldo's belt and UFC's Dana White attempts to intervene Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

I can make it
Keith Earls reaches over Iain Henderson during Munster’s clash with Ulster. (Photo by INPHO/Morgan Treacy)

Guinness PRO12, Kingspan Stadium, Belfast 9/5/2015 Ulster vs Munster Ulster's Iain Henderson with Keith Earls of Munster Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Legend
Paul O’Connell leaves Thomond Park. (Photo by INPHO/Ryan Byrne)

Guinness PRO12 Play-Off, Thomond Park, Limerick 23/5/2015 Munster vs Ospreys Munster's Paul O'Connell Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Cheese
Barbarians take on Ireland XV at Thomond. (Photo by INPHO/Billy Stickland)

Barbarians Summer Tour Match, Thomond Park, Limerick 28/5/2015 Ireland XV vs Barbarians Barbarians them do a selfie Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

Back of the net
Wicklow goalkeeper Robert Lambert is beaten from the penalty spot by Meath’s Andrew Tormey. (Photo by INPHO/Morgan Treacy)

Leinster GAA Football Senior Championship Quarter Final, P‡irc Tailteann, Meath 14/6/2015 Meath vs Wicklow Wicklow goalkeeper Robert Lambert is beaten from the penalty spot by Meath's Andrew Tormey Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Jumping with joy
Team Ireland’s Thomas Barr (University of Limerick) celebrates after winning the Men’s 400m hurdles at the World University Games. (Photo by INPHO/Cathal Noonan)

*** PRESS RELEASE - NO REPRODUCTION FEE *** World University Games Gwangju 2015, Men's 400m Hurdles, Gwangju Universiade Main Stadium, South Korea. 10/7/2015 Team Ireland's Thomas Barr, Waterford, (University of Limerick) celebrates after winning the Men's 400m hurdles Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

Top scorer
Fermanagh’s Sean Quigley celebrates beating Roscommon at the final whistle. (Photo by INPHO/Presseye/Andrew Paton)

GAA Football All Ireland Senior Championship Round 2B, Brewster Park, Fermanagh 12/7/2015 Fermanagh vs Roscommon Fermanagh's Sean Quigley celebrates at the final whistle Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Presseye/Andrew Paton

The stare
Just Roy Keane. (Photo by INPHO/Donall Farmer)

SSE Airtricity National U17 League Launch, FAI Headquarters, Abbotstown, Dublin 27/7/2015 Republic of Ireland Assistant Manager Roy Keane Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

Easy!
Ballydavid Blueberry ridden by Anna Dangerfield misbehaves at the end of the Connemara Performance Hunter Championship. (Photo by INPHO/Lorraine O’Sullivan)

2015 Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show, RDS, Dublin 6/8/2015 The Connemara Performance Hunter Championship Ballydavid Blueberry ridden by Anna Dangerfield misbehaves at the end of the Connemara Performance Hunter Championship Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Lorraine O'Sullivan

On me head, son
Cork City’s Kevin O’Connor and Karl Sheppard collide. (Photo by INPHO/Donall Farmer)

SSE Airtricity League Premier Division, Tallaght Stadium, Dublin 17/8/2015 Shamrock Rovers vs Cork City Cork's Kevin O'Connor and Karl Sheppard collide Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

Dublin skyline
Picturesque view of Leinster v Moseley in a pre-season friendly in Donnybrook. (Photo by INPHO/Dan Sheridan)

Pre-Season Friendly, Donnybrook, Dublin 28/8/2015 Leinster vs Moseley A view of a line-out Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Hope of a nation
Jon Walters celebrates with Wes Hoolahan after delivering victory against Georgia. (Photo by INPHO/Donall Farmer)

UEFA European Championship 2016 Qualifying Round Group D, Aviva Stadium, Dublin 7/9/2015 Republic of Ireland vs Georgia Ireland's Jonathan Walters celebrates scoring with Wes Hoolahan Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

Oblivious
Sisters Emily and Lucy McCarthy play in the sand at Laytown Racing. (Photo by INPHO/Ryan Byrne)

Laytown Racing, Laytown, Co. Meath 10/9/2015 Sisters Emily, aged 2, and Lucy, aged 5, McCarthy play in the sand during The Gilna`s Cottage Inn Maiden Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

In the spotlight
Limerick players celebrate winning the U21 All-Ireland hurling championship. (Photo by INPHO/Cathal Noonan)

Bord Gais Energy GAA All Ireland Under 21 Hurling Championship Final, Semple Stadium, Thurles, Tipperary 12/9/2015 Limerick vs Wexford Limerick players celebrate with the trophy after the match Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

Giant killer

Shane Long fires past Manuel Neuer as Ireland secure a historic victory against world champions Germany. (Photo by INPHO/Donall Farmer)

UEFA EURO 2016 Qualifier, Aviva Stadium, Dublin 8/10/2015 Republic of Ireland vs Germany Ireland's Shane Long scores their first goal Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall FarmerLogo.jpg

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