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Characterize the attitude of the British to sport. Complete the given passage, making use of the following word combinations from the box. Extend the statements.

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1. People all over the world are fond of sports and games. But there are ……… which enjoy the greatest popularity in that country or another. In Great Britain taking sports is a favourite past-time for people.

2. The fitness boom of the eighties led to big rise in the numbers of people participating in sports. Modern ……… with their swimming pools, squash courts, gyms and indoor courts, are competing with clubs, pubs and cinemas as places for people to go to spend their leisure time — and their money.

3. The British do all kinds of things in their spare time: they go shopping or jogging, they play darts or football, they collect records or stamps, they go to church or to the pub. People go to ……… or take part in aerobics and yoga and some of them do a kind of ……… in a gym. A lot of the British go cycling, play football and golf. Another common activity is jogging. Other popular sports are bowling, badminton, tennis and squash.

4. Many sports have their origins in Britain that is why Britain is sometimes called the cradle of sports. Two types of rugby, hockey, cricket, darts, tennis and boxing were invented in England. Golf ……… in Scotland. Here are the major ……… in Britain - Wimbledon (the Grand Slam Tennis Tournament), the British Open Golf Championship, the Grand National (it is the best known horse-racing steeplechase).

5. The game peculiarly associated with England is cricket. Many other games are also English in origin, but have been accepted with enthusiasm in other countries; cricket has been seriously and extensively accepted only in the Commonwealth, particularly in Australia, India, Pakistan.

Cricket is slow, and a spectator, sitting in the afternoon sun after his lunch, may be excused for having a little sleep for half an hour. Cricket is making no progress in popularity.

Rugby football is played with an egg-shaped ball which may be carried and thrown (but not forward). Rugby is played mainly by the ……….

6. The games of golf and tennis are played by great numbers of people. Golf is played in the countryside. It consists of driving a small ball towards and into holes separated by considerable distances, by means of special «golf clubs». The aim is to go round using as few strokes as possible.

7. There are many tennis clubs, but every town provides ……… in public parks. The world championship tennis matches ……… at Wimbledon in London, during June and July.


weight training, sport events, are held, national games, keep fit classes, has its origins, tennis courts, health centres, amateurs


Work in pairs

6. Restore the dialogues from the questions given below:

- Well, what sport do you do? You look quite athletic…

- ….

- Why did you give up?

- ……

- Oh, it’s a pity. I suppose you were very upset, weren’t you?

- …..

- You know, I really love tennis… my friend says I’m a natural fan. Shall we have a game sometimes?

- …..

- Don’t be silly. I’m only a novice. We’ll just have a friendly game.


- OK. See you on Sunday.

- Oh, I used to play tennis, but I gave it up three years ago.

- A bit. But sport is still a part of my life. I go to the court once in a while.

- I broke my arm.

- Well, I don’t know. I’m out of practice.

7. Restore the dialogue from the replies given below:

- ….

- Swimming was my life until I was eighteen.

- ….

- I used to train twice a day. I’d go for a few hours in the morning, before school, and then every evening as well. My dad would drive me to the swimming pool and wait for me.

- ….

- I stopped when I realized that I wasn’t going to win any major championships or anything like that.

- ….

- I suppose it made me stronger and fitter, and I get the chance to travel to a lot of interesting places.

- ….

- A bit! But I think I’d do it again if I had the chance.


- Do you regret spending so much time on it? You could do some other very interesting things.

- Do you go in for sport?

- But do you train now?

- So, was it just a waste of time?

- Did it take you much time?


8. What do Steven, Barry and Diana think of women’s participation in sport.

A. Rearrange the dialogue from the questions and the replies given below:

Women's Sport

Diana: That's right: different but equal.

Barry: There have been male ballet dancers, you know.

Diana: Did you see the gymnastics on television last night? The Russian girls were very good, I thought.

Barry: I'm not so certain. Even in the sports that need grace, a good man is often better than a good woman.

Steven: Yes, skating’s like dancing. And there women definitely excel.

Diana: That's the kind of thing only a man would say. Some women are very good at sport.

Barry: Yes, it's nice to see a sport in which women are actually superior to men.

Diana: Really, men are impossible! Nothing but prejudice

Steven: Not all sports need strength. Women are good at things that need grace and skill. Like gymnastics.

Barry: Only at the sports that don't need strength. Have you ever seen women playing football? It's pathetic.

Diana: But look at skating. Men make skating a display of muscles.

B. What is your opinion on this point?


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