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Top 10 Sports Anime Series That You Must Watch in 2020

Top 10 Sports Anime Series
Top 10 Sports Anime Series

The anime culture has grown so much over all these years, and sports sub-genre has become one of the most popular genres of these times, and with shows like Slam Dunk, Haikyuu, etc the hype will only get bigger. With each new year, we get to see a new show and as we are in 2020, it would be best to look at the top 10 sports anime series that you can watch right now.

This list features all the top 10 shows (not in any particular order) that you must binge-watch now. 

Top 10 Sports Anime Series:

Hajime no Ippo
Hajime no Ippo

Hajime no Ippo: The list would be incomplete without this show. Debuting back in 2000, the show follows Makunouchi Ippo and his inspiring story of how he transformed himself from being a weak kid who would get bullied now and then to one of the best boxing champions. The first series ran from 2000 till 2002 which was followed by two more series, Hajime no Ippo: New Challenger (2009) and Hajime no Ippo: Rising (2013).

The characters of Hajime no Ippo include:

  • Ippo Makunouchi
  • Mamoru Takamura 
  • Masaru Aoki
  • Tatsuya Kimura
  • Manabu Itagaki
  • Genji Kamogawa
  • Haruhiko Yagi 
  • Tomoyuki Shinoda

Haikyuu: The anime series follows the journey of two characters Tobio Kageyama and Hinata Shouyou, who despite being rivals happen to become teammates in the official volleyball team of Karasuno High School. The duo pair to be a formidable force that any team would want on their side and the anime follow the characters as they keep their differences aside and work under one roof to take their team to the top. Haikyuu has a total of 4 seasons, and season 4’s first cour was released in April 2020.

The cast and the characters of Haikyuu include:

  • Ayumu Murase as Shōyō Hinata
  • Satoshi Hino as Daichi Sawamura
  • Morohoshi Sumire as Hitoka Yachi
  • Toshiki Masuda as Chikara Ennoshita
  • Nobuhiko Okamoto as Yū Nishinoya
  • Miyu Irino as Kōshi Sugawara
  • Yoshimasa Hosoya as Asahi Azumane
  • Yuu Hayashi as Ryūnosuke Tanaka
  • Kaito Ishikawa as Tobio Kageyama
  • Kōki Uchiyama as Kei Tsukishima
  • Hisao Egawa as Keishin Ukai

Slam Dunk: Next in the list, we have our all-time classic sports anime series Slam Dunk. This follows a high school student named Hanamichi Sakuragi, and his journey from hating basketball to loving it. Because of the sport, Sakuragi once lost his love, however, he soon found his interest back in the sport when he met Haruko, who went onto teaching him the sport. The show ran from 1993 to 1996 and has a total of 101 episodes.

The characters of Slam Dunk includes:

  • Hanamichi Sakuragi
  • Takenori Akagi
  • Kiminobu Kogure
  • Hisashi Mitsui
  • Ryota Miyagi
  • Kaede Rukawa
  • Yasuharu Yasuda
  • Toki Kuwata
  • Satoru Kakuta
  • Tetsushi Shiozaki
  • Satoro Sasaoka

Ace of Diamond: The series focuses on baseball, and it made its official debut back in 2012. The story revolves around Eijun Sawamura, a prodigy with immense pitching talent. Ace of Diamond follows Eijun’s journey of becoming the best of Seidou High School.

The characters of Ace of Diamond include:

  • Ryōta Ōsaka as Eijun Sawamura
  • Nobunaga Shimazaki as Satoru Furuya
  • Takahiro Sakurai as Kazuya Miyuki
  • Natsuki Hanae as Haruichi Kominato
  • Yoshitsugu Matsuoka as Shinji Kanemaru
  • Yūma Uchida as Koshū Okumura
  • Daiki Yamashita as Takuma Seto
  • Shunsuke Takeuchi as Masashi Yūki
  • Ayumu Murase as Kaoru Yui
  • Tasuku Hatanaka as Hirofumi Asada

Free!: The show is based on the novel by Koji Oj, and it follows the life of a talented swimmer student Haruka Nanase. He soon forms a team consisting of Makoto Tachibana, Rei Ryugazaki, and Nagisa Hazuki in order to participate in different swimming competitions. 

The character of Free! include:

  • Nobunaga Shimazaki as Haruka Nanase
  • Tatsuhisa Suzuki as Makoto Tachibana 
  • Tsubasa Yonaga as Nagisa Hazuki
  • Daisuke Hirakawa as Rei Ryugazaki
  • Atsushi Abe as Romio Hayafune
  • Yoshitsugu Matsuoka as Shizuru Isurugi
  • Mamoru Miyano as Rin Matsuoka
  • Yoshimasa Hosoya as Sosuke Yamazaki
  • Kōki Miyata as Aiichiro Nitori
  • Kenjiro Tsuda as Seijuro Mikoshiba

Major: This anime series made its debut back in 2004, and it chronicles the life and journey of Gorō Honda. The show follows his career as he fights all kinds of ups and downs to be the best. His inspiration is his dad, who was a great player, and he hopes to become like him one day. It made its debut in 2004 and ran till 2010 and has a total of 6 seasons.

The characters of Major include:

  • Showtaro Morikubo as Gorō Honda
  • Takehito Koyasu as Shigeharu Honda
  • Noriko Hidaka as Chiaki Honda
  • Junko Noda as Momoko Hoshino
  • Shunsuke Sakuya as Hideki Shigeno
  • Masakazu Morita as Toshiya Sato
  • Yuko Sasamoto as Kaoru Shimizu
  • Kōji Ochiai as Joe Gibson
  • Romi Park as Taiga Shimizu 
  • Kahoru Sasajima as Ryota Sawamura

Yuri!!! on Ice: This sports anime series follows Yuri Katsuki, a great figure skater who, after losing Grand Prix finals, had his confidence completely crushed. This is one of those stories which tell you to never give up and fight your losses to find the key to success. Although Yuri had a lot of doubts regarding his future, everything changed when he met Victor Nikiforov, a Russian figure skater.

The characters of Yuri!!! on Ice include:

  • Toshiyuki Toyonaga as Yuri Katsuki
  • Jun’ichi Suwabe as Viktor Nikiforov
  • Koki Uchiyama as Yuri Plisetsky
  • Soryu Konno as Toshiya Katsuki
  • Kei Hayami as Hiroko Katsuki
  • Kyōko Sakai as Mari Katsuki
  • Mariya Ise as Yuko Nishigōri 
  • Jun Fukuyama as Takeshi Nishigōri
  • Akiko Yajima as Axel Nishigōri 
  • Yuka Komatsu as Minako Okukawa
  • Taihei Katō as Hisashi Morooka

The Prince of Tennis: The show centers around a 12-year old gifted tennis player, Ryoma Echizen who just moved back to his hometown in Japan. He is already a prodigy and has defeated some of the best in the business, however, he is still not close to defeating his dad, so he joins up a new team and grinds extremely hard until he beats him. The original series ran from 2001 to 2005 and has 178 episodes total.

The characters of The Prince of Tennis include:

  • Ryoma Echizen
  • Kunimitsu Tezuka
  • Shuichiro Oishi
  • Shusuke Fuji
  • Sadaharu Inui
  • Eiji Kikumaru
  • Takeshi Momoshiro
  • Takashi Kawamura
  • Kaoru Kaido
  • Sumire Ryuzaki 
  • Kippei Tachibana
  • Akira Kamio
  • Shinji Ibu

Kuroko no Basket: The show follows the team of Teiko Middle School, whose five prodigies were enough to demolish any team standing in their way. With changing time, all of the five members got admitted to different schools, however, there was a sixth member, whole skills kept in a whole other league and he is about to start his new journey with the Seirin Gakuen school. It has a total of 3 seasons and a film based on the manga ‘Kuroko’s Basketball: Extra Game.’

The characters of Kuroko no Basket include:

  • Seijūrō Akashi
  • Shintarō Midorima
  • Ryōta Kise
  • Daiki Aomine
  • Atsushi Murasakibara
  • Tetsuya Kuroko
  • Taiga Kagami
  • Teppei Kiyoshi
  • Junpei Hyūga
  • Shun Izuki
  • Rinnosuke Mitobe

Yowamushi Pedal: This series was released in 2013, and the story is about a young student named Onoda who ends up joining a bicycle club after being rejected from the anime club of his school. It currently has a total of 4 seasons and the last one came out in 2018.

The characters of Yowamushi Pedal include:

  • Sakamichi Onoda 
  • Shunsuke Imaizumi 
  • Shoukichi Naruko
  • Shingo Kinjou
  • Yuusuke Makishima
  • Jin Tadokoro
  • Junta Teshima
  • Hajime Aoyagi 
  • Terufumi Sugimoto
  • Koga Kimitaka