Scotland is part of the United Kingdom, though it has a unique history and sporting culture, and competes in many sports in international competitions as a team from Scotland, though at the Olympic Games athletes from Scotland represent Great Britain.
Scotland has played a part in the development of many sports, such as golf, curling, water polo, and shinty. The modern game of golf originated in 15th century Scotland, and curling existed in Scotland in the early 16th century. The Highland Games is a multi-sport event which predates athletics events. Events in the Highland Games include throwing a wheat sheaf over a 17-meter bar, tug-o-war, tossing the caber and shifting the stones. In addition to the physical events, there is also dancing and music.
Rugby union is a popular sport in Scotland. The first-ever international rugby match was also between England and Scotland which took place on March 27, 1871. Scotland also participated in the first-ever international football match where they played against England on November 30, 1872.
Scotland has a national cricket team, though it is not as popular as it is further south of the border in England. Scotland does not play Test matches, but it is now allowed to play full One Day Internationals, and takes part in the Cricket World Cup, and reached the final tournament in 2007.
Popular sports of Scotland
Regional or Traditional Sports of Scotland
- Shinty — Scottish team sport resembling field hockey, played with long curved sticks and a small ball which is hit through tall goalposts. Derived from the Irish game of Hurling.
- Caber Toss — a traditional Scottish sport in which the competition revolves around tossing forward a large tapered pole called a caber.
- Ba Game — a version of Medieval Football played in Scotland, a type of Mob Football where two parts of a town have to get a ball to their respective sides.
- Curling — Winter Olympic sport in which stones slide on a sheet of ice towards a target area
Scotland Sporting Successes
- The Duke of Argyll's team r,epresenting Scotland, won the 2001, 2004 and 2005 Elephant Polo World Championships.
- Scotland have only ever won one Olympic medal as Scotland, when the men's field hockey team won a bronze medal at the 1908 Summer Games.
Great athletes from Scotland
- Chris Hoy (cycling)
- Andy Murray (tennis)
- Eric Liddell (athletics) - featured in the film Chariots of Fire
- Alan Wells (athletics) - the Olympic 100m winner in 1980.
Scotland Sports trivia
- The Musselburgh Links, East Lothian, Scotland is the oldest golf course in the world.
- A Scot, Launceston Elliot, won Great Britain and Ireland's very first Olympic gold medal, in 1896 in Athens.
- Rugby sevens was initially conceived by Ned Haig, a butcher from Melrose, Scotland as a fundraising event for his local club, Melrose RFC, in 1883.
Scotland at major events
- Great Britain at the Summer Olympics
- Great Britain at the Winter Olympics
- Scotland at the Commonwealth Games
- Scotland at the FIFA World Cup
- Scotland at the FIFA Women's World Cup
- Scotland at the Cricket ODI World Cup
- Scotland at the Cricket T20 World Cup
- Scotland at the Rugby World Cup
- Scotland at the Netball World Cup
Past sporting events hosted in Scotland
- 1970 Commonwealth Games Edinburgh
- 1986 Commonwealth Games Edinburgh
- 1999 Cricket World Cup - Some matches of the tournament, which was held mainly in England, were also held in Scotland.
- 2014 Commonwealth Games Glasgow, Scotland
Upcoming sporting events in Scotland
- 2023 UCI Road World Championships in Glasgow
- 2030 T20 Cricket World Cup co-hosted with England and Ireland.
Annual sporting events held in Scotland
- The Scottish Cup (Football competition, like the English FA Cup)
- British Open (golf) - usually held in England and Scotland, and rarely Northern Ireland
Sporting Facilities in Scotland
- Scottish Institute of Sport
- St Andrews Golf Course
- Hampden Park - national stadium located in Glasgow.
- Celtic Park
- Ibrox Stadium
- Hampden Park
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