Offense (sports)

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In sports, offense (US) or offence (Can.) (see spelling differences; pronounced with first-syllable stress), also known as attack, is the action of attacking or engaging an opposing team with the objective of scoring points or goals. The term may also refer to the tactics involved in offense, or a sub-team whose primary responsibility is offense.

Generally, goals are scored by teams' offenses, but in sports such as American football it is common to see defenses and special teams (which serve as a team's offensive unit on kicking plays and defensive on returning plays) score as well. The fielding side in cricket is also generally known as the bowling attack despite the batting side being the side that scores runs.

Outside North America, the term offence is almost always taken to mean an infraction of the rules, a penalty or foul, and attack is more likely to be used where Americans would use 'offense'.

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