Sport is very important part of life in Great Britain. Thousands of people devote their leisure time to outdoor and indoor games: athletic, mountain climbing, boxing and other sports. Outdoor games played in GB are team games such as football, cricket, and hockey, and games in which individuals or couples try their skill, for example golf. The number of spectators shows that the most popular of the team game is football and cricket, and the most popular individual game is lawn-tennis.
Although Englishmen played a kind of football from the middle age or even earlier as an organized game it dates back from just over a century ago. One type of football, in which the players carried the oval ball in their hands, appeared in 1859 at Rugby School. That is why the name took the name of Rugby. The rules of the game are different from football (soccer). Football matches get big crowds. The Cup Final is one of the most important football matches of the year in England; it is always played at the Wembley stadium, near London.
Cricket is England’s national summer game. Nobody knows exactly how old the game is, but some forms of cricket was being played in England in the 13th century. The rules of the game have changed over the years. The oldest series of international matches is between England and Australia, and the team that wins takes home a famous trophy called The Ashes. And even today for cricket lovers in England and Australia winning The Ashes is like winning The World Cup for football! In England cricket is played in schools and universities, and almost all towns have their cricket team which play regularly at least one match a weak during the season – from May to September.
The number of people who play lawn-tennis is great. The tennis championships held at Wimbledon for two weeks at the end of June and at the beginning of July are the main event of the lawn-tennis season in Britain and, in fact in the world. These championships in which men and women of many nationalities complete, gather large crowds.
Many children in Britain learn to swim at school, or during the holidays at the seaside, and swimming pool as a summer pastime is enjoyed by millions of people. There are also indoor swimming pools which makes swimming possible all the year round. Swimming championships and competitions are widely reported in press and on TV. Attempts to swim the English channel have been made by swimmers of many nationalities every summer. Some of the attempts are successful.