Whitewash (sport)

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A whitewash is an informal term in sport describing a game or series in which the losing person or team fails to score.

A whitewash may be in a single game where the loser fails to score any points or goals, or in a series where the loser fails to win a game. In the United States, the former is more usually called a shutout, while the latter is termed a sweep (or alternatively a 'clean sweep').

It is not typically used for certain games such as association football or baseball, where a failure to score is very common; in football the winning team's goalkeeper is said to keep a clean sheet if they do not concede a goal, while in baseball the winner pitches a shutout.


In cricket, the term is used when one team wins all the matches played in a particular series; some examples include:


The term whitewash is also used in rugby when one team loses every single match in a particular series. There is also the term Grand Slam, which applies specifically to the Six Nations Championship and European tours by the southern hemisphere nations (the term whitewash here often refers to a team losing every match, which in a league format does not require that some other team wins every match). Some of the more recent notable rugby whitewashes are:


In ATP and WTA tennis, the term whitewash is used when a player fails to win a game in a match (6-0, 6-0, 6-0 or 6-0, 6-0). In other words, it is called a triple or double-bagel respectively. Double bagels are more common in tennis.


  1. ^ "Blackwash". I love Jamaica. BBC. Retrieved 19 February 2014.