By Elena Gabrys
With the long-awaited summer holidays fast approaching, we will all let out a deep sigh of relief the moment that they start and we leave school. However, through these warm, sunny and free days it is vital to find things to do, and more importantly, things that are more beneficial than scrolling on our phones.
Sport is one of the many ways to keep active and fill the copious amount of time we have on our hands in the summer holidays. Summer sports range from football to hockey and basketball but can also include volleyball or even golf. These commonly require a team of people or a specific place to play. So, whilst the benefits are undoubted, what are some alternatives if there is no way to play these sports?
Watching sport is a great way to get involved in a community of supporters, find role models and genuinely find a new passion in a world of sport. But what are some major sporting events taking place in the summer of 2023?
Starting the 20th of July and lasting to the 20th of August, there will be a whole month of the Women’s World Cup (football), which can all be watched on the BBC, ITV and ITV4. For the past two years, and even two times before, the United States won the Women’s World Cup and Germany have also won 2 times before. The United States are strong favourites, however, their recent losses to England, Germany and Spain suggest that the path may not be so clear towards the possible third title in a row. Following the US, England is a close second favourite to win the World Cup with Spain being third in favour and surprisingly Germany fourth despite their previous wins. With these unexpected odds it is a mystery to see who will end up rising to the top and winning the World Cup and will definitely keep you on the edge of your seat…
Following in the theme of world-wide women’s championships, the Netball World Cup is being held from July 28th to August 6th in Cape Town, South Africa and the matches can be watched on BBC iPlayer. Though the event has been hosted 15 times already, the first place spot has been completely dominated by Australia and New Zealand with England keeping a trend of being in the top 3 most years, receiving 3rd place most recently in 2019. Can England push through and win the tournament or will Australia add a 12th Netball World Cup to their trophy cabinet?
Yet another major sporting event is the Men’s and Women’s ashes. Whilst the women’s already ends on the 18th of July, the men’s last until the 31st of July. This cricket tournament started in 1877 with the first Test match being played between England and Australia in Melbourne. However, the Ashes legend started later, after the ninth test, played in 1882. The Ashes is played every two years which makes it even more exciting to watch in the summer. Australia and England are the strong favourites for this year, but Australia has previously won the Ashes more as it has won 140 out of the 340 matches compared to England who have only won 108. Australia has won on 34 occasions whilst England has won on 32. This year’s Ashes are still unpredictable so a very thrilling over all watch, they can be viewed on Sky Sports!
Continuing with cricket, The Hundred is a 100-ball cricket tournament which means that the goal is to attract a new audience to the game with simplified rules. The dates are from the 1st of August to the 27th of August and include 8 men’s teams and 8 women’s teams. It is still a new tournament, with the first edition being in 2021, but as the rules are simplified it is a great even to tune into Sky Sports and follow if bored in the summer and wanting to get into cricket.
Lastly, one of the later major events of the summer is the US Open tennis tournament, taking place from the 28th of August to the 10th of September and can be followed on Amazon Prime Video. This is one of the more international competitions taking place with players from countries including Tunisia, Poland, Spain, Brazil and more. The current favourite for the men’s is Novak Djokovic as he has already won the French open and was the close runner up in Wimbledon only a few days ago and being on quite an unstoppable streak this year already. The current number 1, Carlos Alcaraz, is the defending champion, who has also recently won Wimbledon, but will he be able to beat the experienced Djokovic with such an amount of recent successes? On the women’s side the strong favourite is current number 1 Iga Swiatek, who will be looking to defend her title and her number 1 position. However, her close rivals are Aryna Sabalenka, ranked 2nd, and Elena Rybakina, ranked 3rd. Despite this, as the not long ago unranked player Marketa Vondrousova has recently shot up in the ranking to 10th position after winning Wimbledon, can she take the US Open title from the current number 1?
Through the summer, as boredom is common, following these, and many more which are not mentioned here, sporting events are a great way to the pass time and also a way to discover a potential new passion. So, tune in and watch these fascinating sporting events this summer as a great new activity!