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UK court rejects bid for bridge to be recognized as sport

Associated Press logo Associated Press 1/19/2017
FILE - In this Sept. 9, 2015 file photo, a player holds a selection of playing cards, during a game, in Coventry. Bridge players who want the card game recognized as a sport have lost their latest legal bid in Britain. The Court of Appeal in London on Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017 upheld an October 2015 ruling backing Sport England’s refusal to put bridge in the same category as badminton, billiards and ballroom dancing. (Joe Giddens/PA via AP, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Sept. 9, 2015 file photo, a player holds a selection of playing cards, during a game, in Coventry. Bridge players who want the card game recognized as a sport have lost their latest legal bid in Britain. The Court of Appeal in London on Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017 upheld an October 2015 ruling backing Sport England’s refusal to put bridge in the same category as badminton, billiards and ballroom dancing. (Joe Giddens/PA via AP, File)

LONDON (AP) — London Bridge may cross The Thames, but it won't fly as a sport.

British players who wanted the card game recognized as a sporting activity lost their latest legal bid on Thursday.

The Court of Appeal in London upheld an October 2015 ruling backing Sport England's refusal to put bridge in the same category as badminton, billiards and ballroom dancing.

The English Bridge Union, which has some 55,000 members, had sought the designation.

The union argued that not having bridge recognized as a sport meant fewer opportunities for public funding and promotion. It says the game has health benefits.

Sport England, which makes public funding decisions, has a policy that sports must involve a "physical activity" component. Its recognized sports include angling, darts, dodgeball, model aircraft flying and ballooning.

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