Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: May 18, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412971935 | Print ISBN: 9781412966702 | Online ISBN: 9781412971935| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Sports, while having many goals, maintain winning as the most important goal. Indeed, winning as the primary function is written into the rules of many sports. This is evidenced by examining the objectives of various sports: In basketball, the team who scores more points in a certain timeframe wins the game; in tennis, the player or doubles team who wins the designated number of games and sets before the opponent does wins; and in baseball and soffball, the team that scores the most runs in defined innings while also preventing the opposing team from scoring wins. Many other rules exist in sports that dictate how the sport is to be played to reach the primary objective of winning. And, while some rules are updated and clarified, it is impossible to have rules in place for every possible action that may occur within a sport. When athletes play or coaches act ...