TIME OFF Sports. Football  The British have a reputation for being mad about sports. The most popular sports are football, rugby football and cricket

Download TIME OFF Sports. Football  The British have a reputation for being mad about sports. The most popular sports are football, rugby football and cricket

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<p>Time off</p> <p>Time offSports Football The British have a reputation for being mad about sports. The most popular sports are football, rugby football and cricket.Most sport is the work of skilled professionals. The game of football or soccer was first played in Britain and then spread in other countries. There are also plenty amateur soccer players in Britain who enjoy playing the game during the weekend. Amateur clubs can compete against the professionals in the English Football Association Cup competition.RugbyRugby football is very popular both in England and other Commonwealth countries. the story is told that, in 1823, boys at Rugby School in England were playing football in the normal way, when suddenly on boy picked the ball up ran with it. So a new game was born.There are two forms of rugby: Rugby Union is the amateur game and Rugby League is the professional one.The two games have different rules. Rugby League is mainly played in the North of England. Rugby Union is the traditional sport of Wales.Cricket Football is the favourite winter game in Britain, and cricket is the favourite summer sport.Cricket isvery much connected with Britain. It is playe with enthusiasm which were once a part of the British Empire, so cricket is played, for example, in India and Pakistan and it survives in the Greek Island of Corfu.Cricket is played by professional players in teams representing the English counties. From these county teams, a national team is chosen to play Commonwealth countries like Australia and India. These international matches are called Test Matches and can last up to five days. Cricket The county teams play during the week. In the recent years they have had to play one-day matches on Sunday.Amateur cricket follows the same rules as the professional game. A typical amateur cricket match takes place on a village green, an open grassy space in the centre of the village. It is played between two team, the home team and the visitor who come from another village in the neighbourhood.Horse racingIt has a long history in Britain. It is sometimes called the sport of kings because it is very expensive to own a racehorse. However interest in racing is not restricted to the rich.Gambling especially on horses is a part of many peoples lives in Britain. It used to be illegal to bet with money except on race courses and with certain licensed bookmakers who took bets on the telephone. There used to be a lot of illegal betting, for example in the street or in factories. In 1960 an Act of Parliament was passed, making betting shops legal.There are two kinds of horse racing: flat racing and steeplechasing. In the former the horses run on level or flat ground; in the latter they jump over obstacles (fences).</p> <p>Horse riding and sailingA variety of sports are practised: golf, tennis, athletics, swimming and polo but there are some which have become more popular in recent years.One of them is horse-riding, but it is still a leisure occupation for the rich.Another is sailing. It is estimated that over 3 million Britons go sailing in small boats every year on lakes, reservoirs and rivers.</p>