Here’s a summary of what you can find in my weekly China Digest for SportBusiness:
Fresh off making their 2017 China Sources list, this is my debut China Sports column for SupChina, which you can read in full here. Below is a summary of what went on this week.
Following a documentary on German television last month, the world’s media reported on allegations about China’s doping history, prompting an official reaction from WADA. But how much of this is actually new, what will – or can – WADA do about the claims and what does this mean for China’s future sporting ambitions?
When it comes to the 2022 Olympic Games, FIFA – not the IOC – is holding the joker in the pack. And that Joker is far closer to Heath Ledger’s dark portrayal of the character than anything that faintly resembles amusement.
After making history by reaching their first ever Olympic semifinal, the Chinese men’s curling team fell short against Canada on Wednesday night, losing 10-6 in a high-scoring game that equaled the record for total number of points in a semifinal.
With Olympic visas already in force, it’s clear we’re in the final run-up to the Sochi Olympics. But as one cycle nears completion, another one is just starting. The quest to host the 2022 Winter Olympics has begun with six bids from Europe and Asia – including a Chinese bid from Beijing & Zhangjiakou – competing in a fascinating battle between traditional and developing winter sports markets.
There was stunning news out of China on Tuesday when it was revealed the Chinese Olympic Committee had recently submitted its bid to host the 2022 Winter Games, with events held in both the world famous city of Beijing (ice sports) and the ever so slightly less well-known city of Zhangjiakou (snow sports).
Japan is having a very, very good time on the Olympic stage right now. Firstly, Tokyo won the right to host the 2020 Olympics. They had always been the favorite, but had to allay growing fears that Fukushima’s ongoing nuclear nightmare would not have any long-lasting effects for the country (though, in truth, they may have been helped more by a combination of Spain’s dreadful employment record and Turkey’s heavy-handed government). It also means Asia will host back-to-back Olympic Games, following Pyeongchang in 2018.
Secondly, wrestling has been reinstated into the Olympic schedule. Much has changed since February when wrestling looked set to lose out, but Japan will benefit hugely from this. Not only do they sit fourth in the all-time medal table for Olympic wrestling (third if you take out the now-defunct Soviet team), but they won four gold medals in London last year, a total matched only by Russia.