In case you hadn’t noticed, one country seems to be dominating the world of sports currently. On top of being the reigning European and World Champions in football, Spain has also come to dominate just about every sport in which Spaniards compete. Basketball, Motorsports, Alpine Skiing, Cycling, and Tennis have all seen la Rojigualda flying in the champion’s position.
At the US Open, which was won in an epic final match by Majorca’s Rafael Nadal, featured three Spaniards in the Quarterfinals. Instead of this being a major shock, it would have been more of a surprise had it not been the case. Had Nadal not faced Tommy Robredo in the Quarters, half the Semifinalists might have hailed from Europe’s sixth most populous nation. Yes, Spain is the nation the rest of the world is chasing in the realm of sport, but what needs a bit of exploring is why Spain produced three quarterfinalists and the US Open.
España is enjoying a Golden Age when it comes to sport, and the world’s best footballers aren’t clambering for multi-million Euro transfers to play in the pleasant climes of La Liga for nothing. Since returning to the world stage whilst hosting the 1982 World Cup, Spanish football has been the envy of Europe. Great facilities, passionate fans, a global following and packed stadia have allowed the Primera División and consequently the Spanish National Football Team to flourish.
With Spanish sporting participation growing through the 1980’s, Barcelona hosting the 1992 Olympics led to even more investment and involvement leading into the new millennia. Blessed with a prefect climate, a sports-crazed population and now world-class facilities in every corner of the nation, Spain became a sports super-power.
Tennis became the next sport where España became the top nation. With 19 top 10 players and four Number Ones in the Open Era, Spain is second only to the United States as a producer of champions. However, since the year 2000, with five Davis Cup victories and the emergence of players like Rafa Nadal, Spain has been the top Tennis power.
Taking advantage of top coaching, year-round playing weather and facilities unparalleled in Europe, Spain has become the top destination for tennis players from around the world to improve their games as well. Sports camps like ISC Spain on the Costa Blanca have allowed these players to learn the Spanish way whilst emerging themselves in the culture responsible for turning out a disproportionate amount of champions. It seems like Spain is looking to spread their sporting wealth with the rest of the world, and we can’t argue with the results.