But It's Just a Game ... Isn't it?

Discuss all types of sports.
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jones jones
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Joined: Sat Jan 26, 2008 7:30 am

But It's Just a Game ... Isn't it?

Post by jones jones »

I’ve always been interested in sports and as a youth I played in various disciplines. At the time we used to have a practice on Wednesday and a match on a Saturday. Professionalism was restricted to maybe rugby league and very little else.

Today it’s a different story altogether. Just about everything except maybe croquet, and I could be wrong, is played on a professional basis. Big money, in fact fortunes, are earned by the top players in most sporting codes today.

Fresh faced kids hardly out of school are signed up by wealthy clubs before they have even had the chance to sow their wild oats. They have access to dieticians, physios, sports psychologists, video analysis of the own and their opponents performances and the use of state of the art gymnasiums plus who knows what else?

During the playing of matches there are several unscheduled water breaks, changes of equipment and the rules have changed in many of these sports supposedly for the safety of the participants. Officials have the benefit of video replays from every angle; they have on field microphones, they have referees & assistant referees miked up and in constant contact with each other, video umpires and probably a few more aids I have forgotten to mention. Matches are now scheduled to start at times which wealthy sponsors deem best and cable TV companies pay millions for broadcast rights to all major sporting events.

However, it may be my imagination, but there seem to be a lot more stoppages for injuries and the games seem to be more stop and start without as much flow as there used to be when I was a kid. Umpires and referees and assistant referees seem to also make more mistakes now even with all these electronic aids.

Guess its more about money now than sport.

So do you think sport today is better than it was when you were young?
"…I hate how I don’t feel real enough unless people are watching." — Chuck Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters
Clodhopper
Posts: 5115
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:11 pm

But It's Just a Game ... Isn't it?

Post by Clodhopper »

Yes, in many ways.

I'm very confused. Rugby League? Apologies for placing your home on the wrong side of the Atlantic...
The crowd: "Yes! We are all individuals!"

Lone voice: "I'm not."
Clodhopper
Posts: 5115
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:11 pm

But It's Just a Game ... Isn't it?

Post by Clodhopper »

To expand:

I'm talking about Cricket and Rugby Union mainly, but Sport in general too. In my lifetime I've seen Rugby go professional, at the right time and remarkably successfully. The Rugby World Cup is now a truly global event, Argentina has joined SA NZ and Aus in the 4 Nations and the 5 went to 6 nations a few years ago now. The USA fields a side, Russia is starting to, Georgia claims Rugby was really invented in Georgia and Khazakstan has a side. China are getting involved too, or so I seem to remember. Aren't they are on the Sevens circuit? The Cherry Blossoms have graced the game for decades now and there is real portential for the future. My concerns are that with the demise of things like the Churchill Cup the big Unions and the IRFU are taking their eye off the ball and the recent positive developments will not be followed up.

Cricket has for me mostly been about watching the England and Wales (as it is now) Cricket team decline and then Nasser Hussein and others stop the rot and gradually turn things round so that now any side in the world takes us seriously, which has not always been the case. 20/20 is a GREAT success in my book, but the 50 over version is a blight. Test Match Cricket is the pinnacle, and very healthily supported in this country, but not so much elsewhere I gather. That is a concern.

Sport in general here has had a ropey time for decades, but the Olympics seem to have focussed attention probably since the millenium and there have been improvements I think. But it's hard to say for sure. You certainly see a LOT more cyclists round here these days :)
The crowd: "Yes! We are all individuals!"

Lone voice: "I'm not."

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