Portal:Sports

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The Sports Portal

A collection of balls used in various sports

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.

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Selected article

The Rugby World Cup trophy, the Webb Ellis Cup
The Rugby World Cup is a rugby union tournament contested every four years between the top international Test teams. The tournament was first held in 1987, when the tournament was co-hosted by New Zealand and Australia. The most recent tournament was held in New Zealand in 2011; with their national team — the All Blacks — winning after defeating France in the final. The tournament is administered by the Rugby World Cup Limited, who are themselves wholly owned by the International Rugby Board (IRB) — the sport's international governing body.

The winners are awarded the William Webb Ellis Cup, named after William Webb Ellis, the Rugby School pupil who — according to a popular myth — invented rugby by picking up the ball during a football game. Sixteen teams were invited to participate in the inaugural tournament in 1987, however since 1999 twenty teams have taken part. Hosting of the 2015 World Cup has been awarded to England, while Japan will host the event in 2019.Three teams have won the trophy twice, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa; while England have won the tournament once.

Prior to the Rugby World Cup, there were only regional international rugby union competitions. The idea of a Rugby World Cup had been suggested on numerous occasions going back to the 1950s, but met with opposition from most unions in the IRFB. The idea resurfaced several times in the early 1980s, with the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) and the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) independently writing to the IRFB seeking to conduct a World Cup tournament. In 1985, Australia, New Zealand and France were in favour of a world cup and, despite knowing that the international sports boycott of the apartheid regime would prevent their participation, the South African delegates also voted in favour. One English and one Welsh delegate switched sides from their initial votes, causing the proposal to pass.

Selected picture

Selected athlete

Otto Graham holding a football
Otto Everett Graham, Jr. (December 6, 1921December 17, 2003) was an American football quarterback who played for the Cleveland Browns in the All-America Football Conference and National Football League. Graham is regarded by critics as one of the most dominant players of his era, having taken the Browns to league championship games every year between 1946 and 1955, winning seven of them. With Graham at quarterback, the Browns posted a record of 114 wins, 20 losses and four ties, including a 9–3 win–loss record in the playoffs. While most of Graham's statistical records have been surpassed in the modern era, he still holds the NFL record for career average yards gained per pass attempt, with nine. Long-time New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, a friend of Graham's, once called him "as great of a quarterback as there ever was."

Graham grew up in Waukegan, Illinois, the son of music teachers. He entered Northwestern University in 1940 on a basketball scholarship, but football soon became his main sport. After a brief stint in the military at the end of World War II, Graham played during the 1946 season for the National Basketball League's Rochester Royals, who won the league championship that year. Paul Brown, Cleveland's coach, signed Graham to play for the Browns, where he thrived. After he left football in 1955, Graham coached college teams in the College All-Star Game and became head football coach at the Coast Guard Academy in Connecticut. After seven years at the academy, he spent three unsuccessful seasons as head coach of the Washington Redskins. Following his resignation, he returned to the Coast Guard Academy, where he served as athletic director until his retirement in 1984. He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1965.

Selected team

2010 NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers with President Barack Obama
The Los Angeles Lakers are an American professional basketball team based in Los Angeles, California. They play in the Pacific Division of the Western Conference in the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Lakers play their home games at Staples Center. The Lakers are one of the most successful teams in the history of the NBA, and have won 16 championships.

The franchise began with the 1947 purchase of a disbanded team, the Detroit Gems of the NBL. The new team began playing in Minneapolis, Minnesota, calling themselves the Lakers in honor of the state's nickname, "Land of 10,000 Lakes". The Lakers won five championships in Minneapolis, propelled by center George Mikan. After struggling financially in the late 1950s following Mikan's retirement, they relocated to Los Angeles before the 1960–61 season.

Led by Hall of Famers Elgin Baylor and Jerry West, Los Angeles made the NBA Finals six times in the 1960s, but lost each series to the Boston Celtics, beginning their long and storied rivalry. In 1968, the Lakers acquired four time MVP Wilt Chamberlain to play center, and after losing in the Finals in 1969 and 1970, they won their sixth NBA title—and first in Los Angeles—in 1972, led by new head coach Bill Sharman. The 1980s Lakers were nicknamed "Showtime" due to their Magic Johnson-led fast break-offense, and won five championships in a nine-year span, including their first ever Finals championship against the Celtics in 1985. The team struggled in the early 1990s before acquiring Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant in 1996. Led by O'Neal, Bryant, and Hall of Fame coach, Phil Jackson, Los Angeles won three consecutive titles between 2000 to 2002, securing the franchise its second "three-peat".

The Lakers hold the record for NBA's longest winning streak (33), set during the 1971–72 season, it is also the longest of any team in American professional sports. Sixteen Hall of Famers have played for Los Angeles, while four have coached the team.

Selected quote

1919 painting of George Harris
That cricket is going to stay in India there cannot be a shadow of a doubt; it has taken hold all over the country, and chokras can be seen playing in every village with any sort of old bat and ball that they can lay hands on. I should hope that it will do something to get over any racial antipathy; for instance, it must, I think, bring the several races together more and more, in a spirit of harmony that should be the spirit in which cricket is played. Unquestionably, it arouses excitement and enthusiasm, and extreme ambition that one's own side should succeed, but it also ought to lead to friendliness, and that is what is needed in India. East will always be East, and West, West, but the crease is not a very broad line of demarcation – so narrow, indeed, that it ought to help bring about friendly relations.     

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