Sport, also known as sports, is all forms of competitive physical activity which, through casual or organized participation, aim to use, maintain or improve physical ability and provide entertainment to participants. Hundreds of sports exist, from those requiring only two participants, through to those with hundreds of simultaneous participants, either in teams or competing as individuals.
Sport is generally recognized as activities which are based in physical athleticism or physical dexterity, with the largest major competitions such as the Olympic Games admitting only sports meeting this definition, and other organizations such as the Council of Europe using definitions precluding activities without a physical element from classification as sports. However, a number of competitive, but non-physical, activities claim recognition as mind sports. The International Olympic Committee (through ARISF) recognizes both chess and bridge as bona fide sports, and SportAccord, the international sports federation association, recognizes five non-physical sports, although limits the amount of mind games which can be admitted as sports.
Sports are usually governed by a set of rules or customs, which serve to ensure fair competition, and allow consistent adjudication of the winner. Winning can be determined by physical events such as scoring goals or crossing a line first, or by the determination of judges who are scoring elements of the sporting performance, including objective or subjective measures such as technical performance or artistic impression.
In organized sport, records of performance are often kept, and for popular sports, this information may be widely announced or reported in sport news. In addition, sport is a major source of entertainment for non-participants, with spectator sports drawing large crowds to venues, and reaching wider audiences through sports broadcasting.
, often simply referred to as rugby, is a full contact
team sport which originated in England in the early 19th century. One of the two codes
of rugby football
, it is based on running with the ball in hand. It is played with an oval-shaped ball
with a maximum width and length of 30 centimetres (12 in) and 62 centimetres (24 in) respectively, and is played on a field up to 100 metres (330 ft) long and 70 metres (230 ft) wide with H-shaped goal posts on each goal line. Historically an amateur sport, in 1995 the International Rugby Board
(IRB) removed restrictions on payments to players, making the game openly professional at the highest level for the first time.
The IRB has been the governing body for rugby union since its formation in 1886. Rugby union spread from the Home Nations of Great Britain and Ireland, and was absorbed by many of the countries associated with the British Empire. Early exponents of the sport included Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Countries that have adopted rugby union as their de facto national sport include Fiji, Georgia, New Zealand, Samoa, Tonga and Wales. Rugby union is played in over 100 countries across six continents and as of November 2010 118 unions were members of the IRB.
The Rugby World Cup, first held in 1987, takes place every four years, with the winner of the tournament receiving the Webb Ellis Cup. The Six Nations Championship in Europe and The Rugby Championship in the Southern Hemisphere (the latter replacing the Tri Nations) are major international competitions held annually. Major domestic competitions include the Top 14 in France, the English Premiership in England, the Currie Cup in South Africa, and the ITM Cup in New Zealand. Other transnational competitions include the Pro 12, involving Irish, Italian, Scottish and Welsh teams; The Rugby Championship, involving Argentina, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa; and the Heineken Cup, involving the top European teams from their respective domestic competitions.
Sir Donald George Bradman
(27 August 1908 – 25 February 2001), often referred to as "The Don", was an Australian cricketer
, widely acknowledged as the greatest Test batsman
of all time. Bradman's career Test batting average
of 99.94 is often cited as statistically the greatest achievement by any sportsman in any major sport. The story that the young Bradman practised alone with a cricket stump and a golf ball is part of Australian folklore
. Bradman's meteoric rise from bush
cricket to the Australian
Test team took just over two years. Before his 22nd birthday, he had set many records for high scoring, some of which still stand, and became Australia's sporting idol at the height of the Great Depression
During a 20-year playing career, Bradman consistently scored at a level that made him, in the words of former Australia captain Bill Woodfull, "worth three batsmen to Australia". A controversial set of tactics, known as Bodyline, was specifically devised by the England team to curb his scoring. As a captain and administrator, Bradman was committed to attacking, entertaining cricket; he drew spectators in record numbers. He hated the constant adulation, however, and it affected how he dealt with others. The focus of attention on his individual performances strained relationships with some team-mates, administrators and journalists, who thought him aloof and wary. Following an enforced hiatus due to the Second World War, he made a dramatic comeback, captaining an Australian team known as "The Invincibles" on a record-breaking unbeaten tour of England.
Bradman retained a pre-eminent position in the game by acting as an administrator, selector and writer for three decades following his retirement. Even after he became reclusive in his declining years his opinion was highly sought. Bradman's image has appeared on postage stamps and coins, and a museum dedicated to his life was opened while he was still living. On 19 November 2009, he was inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.
The Wales national rugby union team
in international rugby union
tournaments. They compete annually in the Six Nations Championship
. Wales have won the Six Nations and its predecessors 25 times outright, second only to England with 26 wins. Wales's most recent championship win came in 2012
. They also compete in the Rugby World Cup
every four years. The International Rugby Board
(IRB) regards Wales as a Tier One
The governing body, the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU), was established in 1881, the same year that Wales played their first international against England. Wales' performances in the Home Nations Championship (now the Six Nations) continued to improve, experiencing their first 'golden age' between 1900 and 1911. They first played New Zealand, known as the All Blacks, in 1905, when they defeated them 3–0 in a famous match at Cardiff Arms Park. Welsh rugby struggled between the first and second World Wars, but experienced a second 'golden age' between 1969 and 1980 when they won eight Five Nations Championships (including 3 shared wins). They played in the inaugural Rugby World Cup in 1987 where they achieved their best ever result of third. Following the professionalisation of rugby in 1995, Wales hosted the 1999 World Cup and won Grand Slams in 2005, 2008, and in 2012, their eleventh in total. Wales also came fourth in the 2011 Rugby World Cup. Their home ground is the Millennium Stadium, completed in 1999 to replace the National Stadium at Cardiff Arms Park. Ten former Welsh players have been inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame, and three are inductees of the IRB Hall of Fame.
- March 1, 1913 – The International Tennis Federation, the governing body of world tennis, is founded as the International Lawn Tennis Federation
- March 4, 1951 – The 1951 Asian Games, the first Asian Games (opening ceremony pictured), begins in Delhi, India
- March 13, 1986 – The Eagle Pro Box Lacrosse League, the predecessor to National Lacrosse League, is founded by Russ Cline and Chris Fritz
- March 17, 1973 – The inaugural IAAF World Cross Country Championships is held in Waregem, Belgium
- March 18, 1957 – The United States national women's badminton team defeats their Danish counterparts to win the inaugural Uber Cup
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