Sport as warfare

Controlled agression, when channeled into sporting activities and refereed to an internationally accepted set of rules and principles, is a great thing to watch, or even participate in. It evokes strong allegiances and heightens emotions. A winning team, punch, try or throw will often be spectacular and captivate the spectators. Mass hysteria sometimes breaks out when rival supporters clash, and brutal fighting takes place off-pitch or outside other sporting venues.

Egypt has just suffered such mass hysteria and humanity should weep. Contact sports and non-contact sports have their own share of associated thuggery, but the sports themselves should not be condemned for the behaviour of some of their fanatical so-called ‘supporters’. If they truly supported the players, athletes and sports participants of different ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation, they would emulate the best of those sporting icons who work hard to promote the finer principles and values of sports with long traditions of fairness and morally accountable rivalry.

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