Olympic heptathlon champion, Jessica Ennis, recently gave birth to a baby boy. While the likelihood is that she will soon be back in full swing in her training ahead of the defence of her crown at the next Olympics in Rio in 2016, is the future likely to be as glittering for her offspring?

Indeed, just because a famous sporting icon will pass on some of their genes to their child, does that necessarily guarantee future sporting success when these children look to make their mark on the world's running tracks, #Football fields or any other sports arena they choose to ply their trade on?



While male sports stars will have the "advantage" of not interrupting their careers to give birth (and the obvious disruption to training regimes in the nine months before birth) , many female stars may defer having a child until their careers are over or towards the later years of their sporting lives. They may not even return to their sport, hence depriving their children of seeing "mummy" in live action.



Roger Federer seemed intent on his first set of twins being able to see him in a Wimbledon final, which he succeeded in doing (albeit in ultimate defeat) this year. Will that experience have a lasting impression on them and spur them on to emulate his feats in due course?



What does history tell us about the success likelihood of sports stars' offspring?

Ian Botham was one of the megastars of English cricket (and also played in the football league during the winter months in some seasons). His son Liam  achieved some sporting success but more notably in rugby rather than cricket. However he never achieved the heights (nor notoriety!) that his father did. Maybe he preferred to avoid the glare of the expectation that would no doubt always follow him in cricket and sought to achieve success in a new arena, where his "name" was not a watchword of past greatness.

Formula One motor racing offers up an obvious example of the passion and ability being passed from father to son in the shape of Graham and Damon Hill. Both World Champions in their respective careers (Graham winning two to Damon's one). Clearly the "winning formula" was inked into Damon's psyche during his formative years, but sadly his father died before seeing his son emulate his world title winning achievement. However, Damon is alone in being the only offspring to follow his father and win Formula One's coveted crown. 

Football has many examples of sibling success and ("relative") failure. Frank Lampard was a FA cup winner with West Ham United, but his son became a much more successful "version" of the Frank Lampard "model"  with his numerous England appearances and medals for Chelsea. Maybe David Beckham's children can similarly look forward to surpassing his career highlights (or maybe not)?

Surely the pedigree of Liz and Peter McColgan has rubbed off on their daughter Eilish? She too has gained international honours in athletics in her own right and potentially future success is yet to come, although it may be setting the bar a little too high for her to match her mother's haul of World and Commonwealth titles?

JJ Williams was one of the stars of the great Welsh rugby union team of the 1970s. Clearly his pace was passed on to his son, Rhys, whose own haul of medals over the 400m hurdles in athletics is impressive in its own right. Indeed, besides being the current European Champion, he has the full set of Gold, Silver and Bronze medals over the distance at those championships during his career. 

One can only imagine how successful the offspring of Paula Radcliffe (world marathon record holder and former world title winner) and Gary Lough her husband (international middle distance runner for Northern Ireland) may be?

Pressure, what pressure? #Tennis