Who is the best sporting nation



  • overall and p4p?Give your reasons why. This will test your sporting knowledge.



  • Tonga. They just beat Australia at league and they also have the undisputed best flag bearer.



  • Overall: USA. Most Olympic Gold Medals. Produces most of the world's best paid athletes. Absolutely dominant in a number of sports.



  • Is it you?



  • The Aussies would give this a decent nudge.



  • Tokoroa ?



  • 9928dfff-a7e7-4f48-82ce-aa418c912fd4-image.png

    #NationofTasman



  • @voodoo said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Is it you?

    I’m waiting for the big reveal too!



  • @jegga said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @voodoo said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Is it you?

    I’m waiting for the reveal too!

    The suspense is killing me!



  • @jegga said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @voodoo said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Is it you?

    I’m waiting for the big reveal too!

    With a heavy bias towards teenage “powerlifting” in one's garage... I'm guessing the answer is going to be “yes”.





  • Serious answer - probably Finland. Number of athletics medals and Winter Olympics.

    Non serious answer. Oh, so many...



  • @Victor-Meldrew said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Serious answer - probably Finland. Number of athletics medals and Winter Olympics.

    Non serious answer. Oh, so many...

    Close. Norway is #1 per capita. USA #1 in total

    https://www.greatestsportingnation.com/per-capita-cup-2019



  • This is a great question this - so many variables depending on what your angle is.

    I would say USA outright, with Australia on a per-capita basis. At the moment, Britain would be giving it a crack on a per-capita basis as well.

    Although it's tough to give it to a country without a real competitive football team, given the magnitude of that sport. France, maybe?



  • @MajorRage yep, what sports do you use to rank, what events, per capita? success at multiple events or stages?



  • @taniwharugby said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @MajorRage yep, what sports do you use to rank, what events, per capita? success at multiple events or stages?

    Yeah. Even if you look at best athletes it's subjective. Fastest = Jamaica, distance = Ethiopia / Kenya.



  • As far as collective sports are concerned France, undoubtedly. Soccer (1st team sport in the world) : world champions. Basket ball : recently beat the USA in the World Cup and finished third. Handball : several times World and Olympic Champions. Volley ball : World league champions in 2017.



  • Yeah France as much as it galls me (see what I did there?) when you add in rugby and tennis players to the above.



  • @MajorRage said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Yeah. Even if you look at best athletes it's subjective. Fastest = Jamaica, distance = Ethiopia / Kenya.

    Fastest=Jamaica=(probably) most drugs



  • Is it England or GB for the purpose of this exercise? Either way, they probably under-perform given they can't dominate rugby, soccer or netball and have only had limited success over-all recently in cricket. Some really good patches in the Olympics but they've also been dire at the Games at times whilst also enduring really poor periods in some of the aforementioned sports as well. In individuals global sports such as tennis and golf how many majors have British (let alone just English) athletes won?



  • no idea, going to say one of the caribbean nations perhaps a trinidad and tobago?



  • well it is certainly not Scotland, can rule them out, curling and lawn bowls is about all they are good at

    Tricky one regarding the Olympics because England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland do not compete at the olympics



  • Maybe SPOOPS can help us decide



  • Sorry I probably did not get the full demographic there



  • 100% USA. I have no doubt they could dominate the global sports they don't play at a high level if they focused their vast resources (athletes/money etc) towards them.



  • Iceland would be up there on per head of population. Stupid amount of good crossfitters which apprently is the best athlete in the world. Strongman and powerlifting is massive there to. Think handball is alright to. Soccer team has been good of late. Population of 350k or so.



  • Jamaca go bloody well at athletics for a population of 2 and a half mill



  • Hard to go past the US with the mix of money and the collegiate system that produces thousands of amateur athletes who play sport at a bear professional level.



  • USA could absolutely dominate any sport they wanted to really. I'd hate to think how supremely talented their rugby team would be if that was their number 1 winter sport over there, nobody else would get a look in.



  • Probably a number of factors in this with culture, funding, education, politics, population all being important. NZ has done pretty bloody well when you consider the dominance of the AB's, Womans Rugby, Netball, Sailing, Rowing etc etc.

    I think any country that has a vested interest in a sport and then has the right funding and coaching can do well. Think of the Aussies in their cricket, AFL, League (Maybe not best example at the moment lol) and even Swimming.

    Look at what China have done with their Olympic Program.

    The USA obviously has an amazing sporting culture with all of their professional leagues, the college system etc.

    Canada with Curling 😉

    In the end it is hard to go past the USA as they have done well in so many different sporting events.



  • Further to this, the country which can use genetic screening to best select athletes for a specific sport may have a huge advantage moving forward. Imagine if China for example sequences the entire population and can identify which children have the highest probability of having the best physique for whatever sport. Obviously a lot of it is mental but if you can find people who share Phelps or Thorpies shape early then you will have an advantage.



  • @No-Quarter said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    USA could absolutely dominate any sport they wanted to really. I'd hate to think how supremely talented their rugby team would be if that was their number 1 winter sport over there, nobody else would get a look in.

    Team sports, anyway. And the bigger the team (e.g. 23 in rugby) the more population gives you an advantage (everything else being equal) by eliminating any weak links.



  • @No-Quarter said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    USA could absolutely dominate any sport they wanted to really. I'd hate to think how supremely talented their rugby team would be if that was their number 1 winter sport over there, nobody else would get a look in.

    I don't agree. England have shown us what a large player pool and financial resources can (or can't) achieve. What works for the USA is professionalism, to which the rest of the world is catching up. The money on offer ensures that players are exposed to professional standards early and rewards those with the right physical attributes to train. They can still only put XV on the field at any one time.

    What they would likely have is the best club game standard, comprised of players from all over the globe - think Premiere League.



  • Has to be done on a population basis for me. No way small populations can compete with the USA for example, 327mill is a lot of people, especially with their financial resources. They also focus massively on Olympic sports. The change in their sevens team has been a significant example.

    Aus would be well up there if you count league, netball, cricket. All non Olympic sports. As would we based on population I guess.

    Not a great question with so many variables.



  • @Snowy said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Aus would be well up there if you count league, netball, cricket.

    Not on recent results! 🙂



  • @Chris-B said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @Snowy said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Aus would be well up there if you count league, netball, cricket.

    Not on recent results! 🙂

    Haha. I did mean historically or are we just talking this year?

    As I said too many variables. Question needs to be defined to answer it.



  • @Chris-B said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @Snowy said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    Aus would be well up there if you count league, netball, cricket.

    Not on recent results! 🙂

    There's a stunning correlation between the investment after the poor results of the Montreal Olympics and subsequent domination. The expertise that flows (or did) out of the AIS is (was) amazing in terms of outcomes.



  • @antipodean Yeah - the lead up to the Sydney Olympics was the wort ever time for an NZ sports fan.

    I'm guessing that after Sydney the budget thrown at sport got rolled back some and correlates with the subsequent decline across many sports?



  • @antipodean said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @No-Quarter said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    USA could absolutely dominate any sport they wanted to really. I'd hate to think how supremely talented their rugby team would be if that was their number 1 winter sport over there, nobody else would get a look in.

    I don't agree. England have shown us what a large player pool and financial resources can (or can't) achieve. What works for the USA is professionalism, to which the rest of the world is catching up. The money on offer ensures that players are exposed to professional standards early and rewards those with the right physical attributes to train. They can still only put XV on the field at any one time.

    What they would likely have is the best club game standard, comprised of players from all over the globe - think Premiere League.

    Can you imagine the top African American athletes playing rugby? Some of those Basketball players would make absolutely insane locks, they'd be unstoppable. They'd also have a surplus of wings that can run a sub 10 100m. They would have X factor across the field, would be nearly impossible to contain.

    I don't think the English rugby set up today would come close to comparing what they could put together. England doesn't have even one hundredth of the talent that the USA has available.



  • @No-Quarter said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @antipodean said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    @No-Quarter said in Who is the best sporting nation:

    USA could absolutely dominate any sport they wanted to really. I'd hate to think how supremely talented their rugby team would be if that was their number 1 winter sport over there, nobody else would get a look in.

    I don't agree. England have shown us what a large player pool and financial resources can (or can't) achieve. What works for the USA is professionalism, to which the rest of the world is catching up. The money on offer ensures that players are exposed to professional standards early and rewards those with the right physical attributes to train. They can still only put XV on the field at any one time.

    What they would likely have is the best club game standard, comprised of players from all over the globe - think Premiere League.

    Can you imagine the top African American athletes playing rugby? Some of those Basketball players would make absolutely insane locks, they'd be unstoppable. They'd also have a surplus of wings that can run a sub 10 100m. They would have X factor across the field, would be nearly impossible to contain.

    I don't subscribe to this theory. What you need to keep in mind is they may well not mentally be the type of player that is happy to shove in scrums and clear bodies out at rucks. My nephew will be 2m tall and broad shouldered. he'd make a hell of a lock, but is a gentle giant. He literally doesn't apply his genetics to the maximum for fear of hurting other kids on the field.

    Also wingers who can run sub 10s do so because that's what they train for. Repetitive sprinting drastically reduces time.

    People tend to forget that athletes are good at one thing because of specificity - they train to do that. Once you add other skills they can't be as good at the one thing they're known for.


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