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Teams try not to lose marbles at World Championships

By Ben Mitchell

Published 04/04/2015

Dozens of players have travelled from as far afield as the US and Algeria to take part in the British and World Marbles Championships
Dozens of players have travelled from as far afield as the US and Algeria to take part in the British and World Marbles Championships

Dozens of players have travelled from as far afield as the US and Algeria to take part in the British and World Marbles Championships.

A total of 16 teams made up of six players have gathered at the Greyhound Pub in West Sussex, for the annual event which was launched in 1932 but follows in the tradition of the game that dates back to the 16th century.

Tournament organiser Julia McCarthy-Fox explained that in more religious times, marbles was one of the few sports that could be played during Lent, leading to the contest being held on Good Friday.

She said: "People like quirky things, it catches people's imagination, they like being part of a tradition, and what other world championships can you just turn up to and play?

"We always say that this competition is more about tradition than competition and the tradition element is far more important, and that why it's lasted as long. It's quite interesting to watch as there's a lot of skill when you get a decent level of play.

"It's like snooker, although you don't use a cue. It's about getting spin on the marble to get one sphere to move another."

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