Sporting Events to Get Excited About
For a country that absolutely loves sports, Americans take a very insular view. There is nothing wrong with the sports on offer in the States, but at the same time, there is a whole new world of sports, many of which have a global presence, an arena that America plays a bit part role in. Considering how much we loved the World Cup last year — many believed it was us who won the World Cup — we should start looking outside our borders as the world of sport offers so much more than state-to-state rivalries.
So what world sporting occasions should you be excited for in the next couple of months? Let's find out.
The Grand National
Britain has both flat and jumps racecourses. Imagine the Grand National as the jump race — a course that has fences to hurdle — equivalent of the Kentucky Derby. In the world of horse racing, there is no other race as momentous at the Grand National. In 2013, over £150 million was waged in the UK, whilst the 2014 race attracted 56.3% of the viewing British audience.
Although the odds for the Grand National are yet to properly materialize, excitement is already growing. If you are a fan of horses, then you really should watch the National when it hits screens on April 11. This monstrous race features 30 jumps and makes for pulsating viewing.
The Cricket World Cup
Cricket has many of the same qualities as baseball, and much like baseball, cannot make much of an impression outside of North America.
February 13th sees the Cricket World Cup commence in Australia and New Zealand. If you are unfamiliar with the workings of cricket, it is an extremely easy game to pickup. Simply, the side who scores the most runs wins, but once 10 of your 11 batters have been given out the game is over, if you haven't beaten the score by this point, then you lose.
As a game it is more exciting than baseball. The hits are bigger, the balls are more treacherous and the catches are more insane.
With England, Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan, India, and South Africa all competing it is a worldwide tournament that will grip over a billion citizens of the planet. Surely involvement in a tournament with such grandiose is something that has to appeal to Americans.
If you speak to a European and ask for their opinion of American Football they will just tell you that it is a fake version of rugby union.
Rugby is the closest thing to American Football, but the hits are far heavier and the play is much-less stop start, giving you all the excitement of American Football without the near-constant stoppages.
The Six Nations is Europe's premier international rugby tournament as Wales, France, Ireland, England, Scotland, and Italy vie to become the number one side of the region.
Betting suggests that England should win it, which is imperative if they are to have a good showing at the Rugby World Cup come the end of the year. The eighth Rugby World Cup, which will be held in England, will once again see America compete at the world stage. So if you have a taste for watching America in worldwide competition, it would make sense to watch the Six Nations so that once September comes around you have a much more in-depth knowledge of the game.