After many world sports achievements, especially after the World football championship in Russia, Croatia is the world's most powerful sports nation! How could a 4.2 million-country, just a little bit bigger than Berlin, become the best sports country in the world ?! So how strange it is that we are economically the 2nd worst country in the European Union, it is also strange that we are one of the 5 most successful nations all over the world!
Sports successes are directly held to national pride, prestige and positioning of state at international stage, and affect the satisfaction, communion and feeling of belonging to the country.
It is really hard to find a sport in which Croats are not good and have not get European and world prizes - from football and handball, over water polo and tennis, to skiing disciplines and athletics. Therefore, more and more in tourist guides, we find the epithet of Croatia as a sport nation because its sporting successes speak a lot about the people, their talents, their anthropological characteristics and their lifestyle.
Thus sport is increasingly positioned, with its natural beauty and tourism, and recently its rich cultural heritage and lifestyle including excellent gastronomy as one of the key determinants of the contemporary Croatian image.
Is there anything in Croatian genes, a good school system, will, desire and effort to win for Croatia or early recognition of talents? Unfortunately, Croatia can not boast of investing something more important in its sports talent as in sports grounds, stadiums and everything else that would greatly help and result in even better sports results. Imagine what kind of sports brand Croatia would be if the country started to invest more seriously in its sports talents ?!
So then we can really wonder where the excellent and supreme Croatian athletes who have marked the whole decade have grown up.
Because nobody promotes Croatia as its athletes, they are the best ambassadors of the country!
We are presenting you Top 10 Croatian great athletes and Croatian team sports:
Inaccurate queen of Croatian sport! By many, the best Croatian athlete of all time. In a relatively short ski career, she was left skiing at age of 25, she achieved incredible results. She win 4 gold and 2 silver medals at the Olympic Games, 5 world golds and 3 times as the winner of the World Ski Cup, and was also took the title of the best alpine skier in the history of ZOI. Gold in slalom and downhill!
2. Ivica Kostelić
Janica’s brother, Ivica, is the best Croatian skier who has taken many world titles. Even 59 times he was at the winning tron with 26 wins on FIS races in as many as 5 disciplines. He is also a world champion in the slalom and a vice-champion in the super-combination. In addition to winning silver medals at the Winter Olympics, Ivica is also the owner of the Crystal Globe - one large and five small. Let us not forget the creator of this family sports miracle, their father, Ante Kostelić. An unrepeatable sports family as a form of a Croatian story of great, sport success.
3. Goran Ivanišević
He is still the best Croatian tennis player of all time. He will be remembered by the myth of winning the world's largest tennis tournament - Wimbledon! And now far from 2001, no one could predict that Goran Ivanišević, who as the 125th world player was invited to the All England Club, won the most prestigious tennis tournament. Ivanišević won the Davis Cup and Wimbledon, counting 9 titles in a pair and 22 singles titles.
4. Blanka Vlašić
She will surely go into history as one of the biggest Croatian sports heroines, one of the most successful and most popular Croatian athletics. In 2004 she started preparations for the Athens Olympics where she won the final and became the double world champion in high jump. In that discipline, Blanka has achieved the Croatian record, which is also the second best result of all time - 208 cm.
5. Sandra Perković
An athletic champion who is born once in 100 years. First lady of Croatian sport, world champion and winner of the Diamond League in the throwing of the disc. She is the owner of numerous gold medals, and can say that with only 26 years she has managed to win everything that she can win. She has also been named the European athletic star in the rise with 20 years at the European Athletics Convention.
6. Marin Čilić
The top Croatian tennis player who at the very start of his career achieved great success as the best junior world after winning the Roland Garros 2005. One of his greatest career achievements was in 2014 when he won the US Open.2017. in the Australian Open final, won 3rd place at the ATP ranking of the best and most successful tennis players in the world, with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in front of him.
7. Mirko Filipović
Cro Cup, Martial Veteran, Croatian Boxer Mirko Filipović is a fighter of mixed martial arts. His successful career boasts over 30 wins and won the Grand Prix. Mirko also carries the title of one of the most dangerous players in the history of the MMA and one of the best in the history of martial arts and kickboxing.
8. Martin and Valent Sinković
After wining the numerous successes in the dueling discipline, the couple without a pair, the Sinković brothers decided to drop the paddles and set off with a two-headed dumbbell. They took the title of the world champion in 2009. and in 2012. silver at the Olympic Games. In 2014. they set the world record in doubles on pairs, and recently they took another gold and became new champions at the European Championships in Boating 2018.
9. Croatian Handball Team
The strongest Croatian sports collective in the past decade. The popular 'cowboys' have a total of 6 medals. Creating a national team and generation that will be in the top of world handball for a long time.
10. Croatian Water Polo Representation
4 medals only in seniors. Barakudas who were World Champions in 2017 and in every competition among favorites. This year's first European stand and the winning bronze introduction are in further victory of our dangerous baracudas.
And after a great second place in the Russia World Football Cup, we should not miss our Croatian football team, our Vatreni, with whom we both breathe and support them until the last moment. And the fact that the Croatian national team consists of football players coming from all over Croatia, tells us about the fact that when we get together all the mentalities and the genes of Croatia we get such a successful team fighting with their whole heart for their country. And that's the unique thing that we own Croatians - the complexity of fighting for one goal, for our own Croatia!