International sporting competitions are some of the most exciting athletic events because of the great national pride that is on the line. As many international competitions only occur every 2 or 4 years, they are even more intense and exciting. The following is my list of the top 5 international sporting competitions.
5. The Little League World Series:
The Little League World Series is an annual international baseball competition for teams of children ages 11-12. It is hosted in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Teams from across the globe compete on one side of the bracket, while the best little league teams from the United States compete on the other side. The final game pits the best American team against the best International team to determine who is best little league team on the planet.
4. The Ryder Cup
The Ryder Cup is a biannual competition between the best golfers from the United States and the best golfers from Europe. The Ryder Cup uses a unique match play format that is different from the normal stroke play format used in most PGA tournaments. Each team consists of 12 golfers. Eight golfers automatically qualify for each team with the other four being selected by their respective team captain. The competition lasts three days with foursomes and fourball competitions on the first two days and singles matches on the third day.
3. The Winter Olympics
The Winter Olympics is held every four years. The next Winter Olympics will be held in Sochi, Russia in 2014. Men and women from countries around the globe send their best winter sport competitors to compete for gold, silver, and bronze medals. 15 disciplines of 7 different winter sports are competed. Some of the most popular events include figure skating, ice hockey, luge, and curling.
2. The FIFA World Cup
The FIFA World Cup is the biggest and most popular soccer tournament world. Like the Olympics, it is held every four years. The next FIFA World Cup will be held in Brazil in the summer of 2014. Countries from around the world attempt to qualify, but in the end only 32 countries qualify. The World Cup itself is a month long tournament consisting of pool play to eliminate half of the teams followed by single elimination knockout rounds until only one team is left.
- 1. The Summer Olympics
The most important international sporting event has to be the Summer Olympics. Held every four years, the summer Olympics draws the best athletes from all around the world to one place. The London Olympics were just held this past summer. The next Summer Olympics will be held in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. There are significantly more events and medals given out in the Summer Olympics than in the Winter Olympics. Many of the popular events occur in the disciplines of swimming, track and field, and gymnastics. The sports of rugby and golf will be added in 2016, which will just add to the excitement of the Summer Olympics.
Honorable Mentions: Rugby World Cup, FIBA World Championships, Davis Cup, Cricket World Cup
Follow the author on twitter @bpage_sports