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Flash
295812.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:34 am Reply with quote

In polo they do have women's tournaments but mostly women just play in mixed teams which make no reference to gender. In practice the upper levels of the sport are all-male, but there's no rule to say that it must be so and at grassroots level you quite often (in fact normally) see teenaged girls playing on the same teams as elderly men, families playing together and every other combination you can think of.

Nice to think that polo, of all things, may be the most socially progressive sport in the world.

 
suze
295817.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:37 am Reply with quote

Furthermore, cricket is technically gender neutral as well. While there is womens' cricket, there is absolutely nothing preventing women from playing on mens' teams.

At age group levels it's quite common, simply because clubs don't have the resources to run separate boys and girls teams. At higher levels it's less common, but by no means unknown. As yet no woman has played on a mens' county team, but it's happened at the equivalent level in New Zealand.

 
MatC
295823.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:42 am Reply with quote

A woman did very well in the world indoor bowls this year - competing against the men, I mean, although there is also a women's event!

Darts tried to go sex-neutral for a while (opening the world championship to women), but - for no obvious reason - women got nowehere in it, and the top women players demanded, and got, a women's championship; to the disappointment of many, it has to be said, but their reasoning was understandable - they wanted a chance to make a living at the sport, which they simply couldn't do competing "in the open."

I believe cue sports are party mixed, aren't they?

 
MatC
295830.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:45 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
Furthermore, cricket is technically gender neutral as well. While there is womens' cricket, there is absolutely nothing preventing women from playing on mens' teams.

At age group levels it's quite common, simply because clubs don't have the resources to run separate boys and girls teams. At higher levels it's less common, but by no means unknown. As yet no woman has played on a mens' county team, but it's happened at the equivalent level in New Zealand.


Yes, at the next level down - club cricket - I believe it's becoming quite common (mainly because of hugely increased funding very recently for the women's (and girls) game, which has shown - as was often argued - that women's cricket was being held back purely by lack of opportunity, not by lack of talent or interest.)

 
MatC
295831.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:45 am Reply with quote

Flash wrote:
I can't get the "Get the Facts" link on that site to work. What reason is given for not letting them jump, do we know?


It can turn them saucy, that's the danger.

 
Flash
295834.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:47 am Reply with quote

Quote:
competing against the men, I mean, although there is also a women's event

Do they conversely let men participate in the women's event?

 
suze
295836.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:49 am Reply with quote

Chess certainly is, the Hungarian chessist Polgár Judit plays in the leading men's competitions and has been ranked in the world's top ten. She doesn't play in women's competitions at all.



EDIT #1: Self flagellation for misplaced apostrophes in cricket post. "Men's" and "women's" often trip me up.

EDIT #2: To agree with Mat re woman club cricketers. My stepdaughter plays cricket semi-seriously - i.e. on her university's women's team - and has played a handful of times for my husband's club's Sunday XI. (That is to say, serious friendlies rather than league competition.)

 
Flash
295845.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:55 am Reply with quote

Quote:
women's cricket was being held back purely by lack of opportunity, not by lack of talent

I don't say you're wrong, but I have a friend who played for an Old Etonian side in an exhibition match against the England women's team which enjoyed quite a bit of publicity a few years ago because they won the World Championship or something (the name Rachel Heyhoe-Flint springs to mind, though why I remember it I don't know). Anyway, the OE team, which was a more-or-less arbitrary collection of middle-aged chaps who happened to be available on the day, won easily - to the point where they deliberately put on their worst bowlers so they wouldn't win by too embarrassing a margin.

 
suze
295861.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:13 am Reply with quote

Just put that to husband, who is of the opinion that the same wouldn't happen if that fixture were repeated today.

The problem was that until the 1990s few girls were ever exposed to cricket, unless they happened to go to one of the handful of girls' schools that played it. Most "normal" cricket clubs didn't really welcome girls.

That all changed when lots of clubs found out that their grants from bodies such as the Sports Council were conditional on the clubs being open to all - the same is a large part of the reason why few Old Boys clubs compete at a high level any more.

It's certainly not the case yet that an average women's team could beat an average men's team, but he reckons that the England women's team would beat a scratch team of that kind fairly easily these days.

It's also the case that women who play with success on men's teams are mostly batsmen. Women's bowling is someway behind at present.

 
MatC
295882.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:32 am Reply with quote

Yes, that was my point, Flash - since the investment in women's cricket, the standard has risen beyond belief.

What suze says about bowlers is true, though there are some very good female spinners now.

When I said "club cricket" I think I meant league ... I get the divisions rather confused! The point is, that amongst players in their teens and 20s these days, mixed play is increasingly common.

Women's cricket is a good spectator sport, because the women tend not to be able to hit so far or bowl so fast - you get a lot more actual cricket played, whereas the modern men's game is marred by great strength and super-heavy bats.

 
MatC
295890.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:40 am Reply with quote

Flash wrote:
I can't get the "Get the Facts" link on that site to work. What reason is given for not letting them jump, do we know?


The “Get the facts” thing lists various arguments (it doesn't say, but presumably these are the reasons put forward for not allowing women into ski jumping) and then answers them as “myths”. The reasons are:

There are not enough women ski jumping for it to be included in the Olympic
Winter Games.

Women are not good enough to compete at the World Cup level.

Women's ski jumping is not developed enough. There is not enough "universality"

Only a few women athletes can jump respectably.

There must be two World Championship competitions held before an event can
be included in the Olympics.

There is not room on the 2010 program to include the women jumpers.

The cost of including a women's event on the 2010 program would be prohibitive.

 
MatC
295891.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:40 am Reply with quote

Are women (or men,come to that) banned from any summer Olympic events?

 
MatC
295897.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:42 am Reply with quote

Flash wrote:
Quote:
competing against the men, I mean, although there is also a women's event

Do they conversely let men participate in the women's event?


I think not, which makes the whole thing seem a bit silly, but I suppose the point of it is to develop the women's sport over a period of years, so it's a temporarily necessary anomaly.

 
dr.bob
295925.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:55 am Reply with quote

MatC wrote:
Are women (or men,come to that) banned from any summer Olympic events?


Don't know about "banned", but there's certainly a men's 50km walk with no corresponding event for women (both sexes have a 20km walk event).

Men have a decathlon where women have a heptathlon. Perhaps organisers thought their pretty little heads couldn't cope with counting up to 10.

 
Flash
295950.  Fri Mar 14, 2008 8:13 am Reply with quote

I don't know about the merits of this particular case, but in principle if you regard "men's ski jump" and "women's ski jump" as different events and one of them is not competed for at a level which justifies Olympic status then it seems to me reasonable to exclude it.

 

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