I am writing an exposé in writing class. In my lead I am trying to find a verb to replace "came back" Here is the example:

Billy Bob "came back" from behind to win the trophy.

In the active voice verb tense, what would the best verb to replace this?

  • 1
    You could replace the whole verb phrase "came back from behind" with "made a comeback"; the understanding that it's a comeback "from behind" is implicit and doesn't need to be stated, as there is no concept of a comeback from in front. Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 15:52
  • Comeback is a VERY common way to phrase this in spoken English in America by the way. Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 16:02

2 Answers 2


Doing a google search of comeback lists a bunch of synonyms:

synonyms: resurgence, recovery, return, rally, upturn

You can then get synonyms of those words. Going down the synonym rabbit hole, you get a ton of options:

resurrection, reappearance, reemergence, regeneration, resumption, recommencement, continuation, renaissance, convalescence, regroup, reassemble, re-form, reunite, rally

Billy Bob rallied from behind to win the trophy.

  • 2
    "Rally" is good, but "rally from behind" is redundant. One cannot rally from any other position. @John Clifford makes this point above as well
    – user66965
    Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 16:03

Consider this expression often used in sports commentary:

Billy Bob produces a stirring fight-back to win the trophy.

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