In a rather tongue-in-cheek post here I provided a novel metric to gauge the difference between a game and a sport. Perhaps the post wasn't as frivolous as it first appeared however as last week a tax tribunal in the UK ruled that Bridge was not a sport.
The English Bridge Union took a case to try and reclaim tax payments and argued that its members should not have to pay VAT on competition entry fees as bridge was recognised as a sport by the International Olympic Committee and given that croquet, darts and billiards are already recognised as sports by HMRC. The judge in the case alluded to the common perception that sports usually hold an athletic element and bridge had minimal physical contact. This of course begs the question of the athleticism of darts, snooker and chess.
Perhaps a distinction needs to be made for ‘sports of the mind’? Or maybe certain sports such as snooker or darts need to lose their status as a sport and revert to being called a 'game'? Using the metric suggested would clear things up more quickly; activities should be considered sports when changing your footwear can improve your performance. Albeit arbitrary and seemingly obscure such a metric provides a clearer distinction between a game and a sport - Unfortunately for the English Bridge Union it would still be a game but somehow I can’t see this suggestion making in into the rule/tax books anytime soon..!