Asian nations on the rise

Japan doubles fighting to win the Thomas Cup
The USA are back on top of the Global Cup ranking of the world’s best nations in sports, albeit with a narrow margin – 105 pts or 0.8% - over arch-rivals Russia.
But the main story after the month of May is the steady rise of the Asian powerhouse trio of China, Japan and South Korea.
China are an established giant, after finishing  3rd, 4th and 4th in the 2011, 2012 and 2013 editions of the Global Cup. They are currently rather below par in 6th place, though they have climbed two places from April. Yet the ‘tigers’ trio has now become a collective force to watch out for.
Their share of Global Cup points in the first five months of the year has risen from 9.9% in 2011 and 9.3% in 2013 to 11,7% this year.
Japan in particular has had a strong start to the year and an excellent month of May. They climbed 4 places in the Global Cup ranking after finishing a remarkable  2nd in the May monthly ranking, a mere 3 points behind Russia, thanks to top results in the Table Tennis World Championships and Badminton Thomas and Uber Cup team events, and to victory in the Women’s Football Asian Cup.
Besides China, Japan and South Korea, other Asian countries are confirming the continental trend. The combined points share of Asian nations in the Global Cup top 50 is now 13.4%, quite a leap up from 9.3% a year ago. India (Cricket and Badminton), Sri Lanka (20-20 Cricket World Cup Champion) and Kazakhstan (Winter Olympics) have added extra spice to  the ‘three tigers’ performance.

The Global Cup top 10 may still be speaking a familiar mix of European languages together with the two ‘greats’ USA and Russia, but the sun in the sporting East is shining brighter and brighter.