1 Sergio & Fika Motsoeneng
They say two heads are better than one but not if you are clueless marathon brothers Sergio and Fika Motsoeneng.
The nearly identical pair from South Africa did believe two sets of legs would be better than one as they hatched a plot to win their country’s gruelling 90_kilometre Comrades marathon from Pietermaritzburg to Durban on the coast in 1999.
While thickie Fika set off at the start, sibling Sergio hid in a mobile toilet at the halfway point to swap shoes and running chips and reappear fresh for the latter stages.
However, Sergio also reappeared wearing a watch on the wrong wrist and with grazes down his shins.
Bemused runners couldn’t remember being passed by either brother and after all that conniving, they still only came in ninth.
2 Ben Johnson
Little could dissuade Johnson in his underhanded mission to become the fastest man on earth.Â He unsuccessfully tried to rattle gold medallist Carl Lewis with the gamesmanship of a deliberate false start in the 1984 Olympic final in Los Angeles.
But when that didn’t work the Canadian turned to more sinister measures.
He did reverse the humiliation at Seoul in 1988 but was stripped of his title after testing positive for stanozolol.
While this was Johnson’s most publicised disgrace, it wasn’t the only reason he was a rubbish cheat.
After serving a suspension, his comeback was cut short when he was collared in 1993 for having ‘excess testosterone’ and banned for life.
Six years later, the lifelong conviction was found ‘unsafe’ but with nobody prepared to compete against him, Johnson decided to go it alone.
He clocked 11 seconds for his solo 100 metres, arranged a drug test himself to prove he was clean and promptly FAILED it for using hydrochlorothiazide â€” an illegal masking agent favoured by drug users.
3 Spanish Basketball Team
Ten members of the Spanish Paralympic basketball team were forced to hand back their gold medals after it was revealed they had no mental handicap.
The cheats were exposed by Carlos Ribagorda, a journalist, who infiltrated the team for two years prior to the Sydney Games in 2000.
Although not as obvious a giveaway as it first appears, the rules state that able_bodied athletes CAN compete in Paralympic basketball provided they have proven learning difficulties.
Unfortunately for the Spanish, Ribagorda proved that not only did 10 of the 12 have fully functioning limbs but they were all academically sound too.
4 Boris Onishchenko
Perhaps the most ingenuous and yet utterly pointless example of cheating sport has ever witnessed.
Blundering Boris wasn’t a bad modern pentathlete. The Soviet multi_eventer had won medals at the previous two Olympics in Mexico City in 1968 and in Munich in 1972, so quite why he felt the need to break the rules so pitifully in Montreal in 1976 is anyone’s guess.
Whether operating on order from on high or not, he was by common consent already the best fencer in the competition as he took on Britain’s Jim Fox.
Unfortunately, he still felt the need to put his O_Level physics to the test and wired up a dodgy grip that would make his electric epee record a successful hit whenever he flicked a switch.
However, the whole plan short_circuited because Boris’ epee kept setting the buzzer off when his lunges were nowhere near his intended target.
The disgraced Disonishchenko â€” as he became known â€” hadn’t best pleased his comrades in the Olympic Village either.
The USSR volleyball team members threatened to throw him out of their hotel window if they ever met him.
5 FLAVIO BRIATORE
Who’s the more foolish, the fool or the fool who follows him?
Formula One was rocked by the potentially fatal Crashgate scandal dreamed up by Renault supremo Briatore.
Nelson Piquet Jnr was the dopey driver who deliberately crashed his car into a wall at last year’s Singapore Grand Prix.
But Briatore put himself on the fast track to a motor racing life ban by instigating the ridiculous chicanery to try to keep Fernando Alonso’s title challenge on track.
However, the billionaire Italian failed to consider what would happen when Piquet Jnr finally realised he was being used as a risk_taking high_speed pawn.
The result? Piquet Jnr came clean and Briatore was banned from the sport indefinitely.
Lewis Hamilton went on to clinch the championship while Alonso ended the season in fifth.
6 Dean Richards
Hallowe’en came early for Harlequins with a wretched fake blood scam that left the career of man mountain Dean Richards in tatters.
Losing to Leinster in last season’s Heineken Cup quarter_final, the instruction went out for Quins’ winger Tom Williams to bite into a fake blood capsule bought for Â£3.95 in a joke shop in Clapham.
The plan was for favoured kicker Nick Evans to be allowed to take the field as a blood replacement for Williams.
But the whole sorry episode was as poorly executed as Evans’ attempted drop_goal, with the fly_half already so hopelessly crocked his effort barely got off the ground.
With fake blood dribbling from his chops, Williams even winked as he left the field. The Leinster bench took seconds to spot it was all a ruse and by the time the wing made it to the changing room an official was already in hot pursuit.
With the game up, Williams eventually blew the whistle on the ill_conceived plan and the aftermath saw various clumsy cover_ups as Richards attempted to hide the truth.
The former England forward masterminded the whole debacle and eventually admitted: “It was a farcical situation, it really was. It didn’t pan out particularly well on the day.”
Quins â€” whose quartered strip looks a lot like that of a court jester â€” became a laughing stock and Richards’ days at the Stoop were over.
7 Diego Maradona
God moves in mysterious ways and while he may have helped Maradona flick the ball over Peter Shilton in 1986, by 1994 he’d realised that perhaps the Argentine’s World Cup antics needed bringing to heel.
Up until soccer really hit the States, the legendary No10 had proved he could be more deceptive than Derren Brown and a bag of lotto balls.
That quarter_final handball got the better of the officials and England in Mexico and he repeated a similar trick in Italia 90, thwarting the Soviet Union by punching the ball off his own goal line in a group match the Argies had to win.
A veteran by 1994, things looked to be going swimmingly. A more worldly_wise Maradona was pulling the strings in an Argentinian side full of goals.
But not all was as it seemed. After a dismal few years and questionable diet, Maradona had needed some chemical assistance to get himself back into tip_top shape in the form of ephedrine â€” a banned weight loss drug.
Unfortunately, some crazy_eyed goal celebrations up close and personal with a cameraman didn’t go unnoticed â€” although it did prompt pundit Bob Wilson to comment he’d get clouted by the ‘Hand of Bob’ if he’d tried that stunt on him.
Unsurprisingly, he was hauled in for a urine sample and left the tournament howling about a conspiracy against him. The rest of the
Unless you are of Argentine stock, the good old boys from Brazil are always your second_favourite national team. A conveyor belt of free_spirited talent that enthrals â€” from Garrincha and Pele to Ronaldo and Kaka.
Rivaldo could have made that list, too, and he should be remembered for the unbelievable hat_trick he scored for Barcelona against Valencia that culminated in a 90th_minute overhead kick from the edge of the box.
Instead, we remember the wiry forward for hitting the canvas clutching his face after being hit on the knee â€” with a mere football â€” in the 2002 World Cup.
Rivaldo was fined Â£5,180 by FIFA but whinged: “Nobody remembers what the Turk did.”
Just for the record â€” and to complete the pantomime â€” Korean referee Yung Joo Kim showed the Turk, Hakan Unsal, a red card, leading to boos from the crowd as the incident was replayed on the stadium’s giant screens.
9 Kim Christensen
If cheats can be accused of moving the goalposts for the opposition, then Danish stopper Kim Christensen was true to his calling.
Gothenburg’s No1 decided to make the job of the opposing strikers just a little harder by punting the flimsy uprights a few inches closer together in Swedish league matches.
It was a ritual Christensen would probably have got away with had he not tried it earlier this season in a televised game against Orebro.
Told to pack it in by the ref, Christensen, like all yellow_bellied cheats, squealed when later questioned and held his gloves up to having attempted the stunt on several previous occasions.
10 MATT LE TISSIER
The Southampton legend messed up a Â£10,000 scam when he and his chums laid a spread bet on the time of the first throw_in in a Premier League match in the 1990s.
The former England striker planned to boot the ball into touch from the kick_off and clean up â€” as bookies said it would take a minute for it to go out.
But the coup in the match against Wimbledon went wrong â€” and he joked that he had visions of pals “knee_capping” him.
In his autobiography, Le Tissier revealed: “Southampton were safe from relegation and I couldn’t see a problem with making a few quid on the first throw_in.” But his famed right foot let him down.
He explained in his book Taking Le Tiss: “I went to hit it out towards Neil Shipperley but I was nervous and didn’t give it quite enough welly.
“Shipperley knew nothing about the bet and kept it in. I’ve never run so much in my life. I charged around desperately trying to kick the ball out. Eventually I got it out on 70 seconds. It meant the bet was neither won nor lost.”
Saints won the game 2-0, with Le Tissier scoring. The FA have since insisted no action would be taken because he is no longer involved in the game.
It was in an era then you could just about bet on anything â€” although few would have