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Original Issue

The Question: Is your native sport as exciting as baseball and football? (Asked at the United Nations.)

SELIM SARPER, Ambassador to U.N. from Turkey
"Our main national sport is wrestling. I think it requires more all-round skill. In 1948 we won the Olympic Championship. Almost all boys and young men wrestle, in cities and on farms. We even have wrestling matches at family celebrations like weddings and anniversary parties."

ABBA EBAN, Israel Ambassador to U.S. and U.N.
"Our sports are now crystallizing. We play association football, basketball and tennis. I think association football will be the national sport. It is more exciting than baseball and as exciting as American football. Basketball is developing. In Moscow our team finished near the top."

Permanent Delegate
"Our sports are swimming, squash, weight lifting, tennis, polo and fencing. Egypt's swimmers have crossed the English Channel. Abdel Kerin was the world champion at squash. Swimming is the national sport. It's not as spectacular as baseball or football, but more interesting to us."

DR. TINGFU TSIANG, Ambassador to U.N. from Nationalist China
"Our big sports event is a crew race on the fifth day of the fifth moon. China has had this race for 2,000 years without interruption. Wherever there is a river, canal or bay, the guilds compete. Everyone watches from tea houses, boats or the shore. There's nothing like it in any other country."

SIR LESLIE KNOX MUNROE, Ambassador to U.N. from New Zealand
"Our rugby is far more exciting than your baseball and much more rugged than American football. It is a faster game and requires more fitness than football. There is no protective padding. If one is injured it's just too bad. Players must play one and a half hours without replacement."

DR. CARLOS BLANCO, Ambassador alternate to U.N. from Cuba
"People think jai alai is our national sport. Not so. It's a Basque sport. Our sport is baseball. Cubans are emotional about the game. Boys play it as soon as they can walk. Old men play softball. Sugar is our biggest export. But our most famous export to the U.S. is baseball players."

AWNI KHALIDY, Chief Iraq delegate
"Horseback riding and stunting is our sport. Every boy's ambition is to own and train a beautiful Arabian horse. The two become inseparable friends. Many of our boys grow up on horseback. Magnificent riding and stunting would be an awesome sight in America but is commonplace in Iraq."

"That is a question that is really hard for me to answer. I'm an enthusiastic mountain climber and skier. I really know very little about competitive sports, either in Sweden or in the U.S. As a matter of fact, I have not seen a football game or baseball game in my life."

SIR PIERSON DIXON, British Ambassador to U.N.
"I haven't been able to keep awake long enough at a baseball game or in a cricket match to make a comparison. There are minutes when nothing happens in baseball. I must say I prefer cricket. The break for tea gives me a lift. Your football and our rugby are murderous, equally exciting."

ARKADY A. SOBOLEV, Acting Ambassador to U.N. from U.S.S.R.
"It is so difficult to say because we have so many nationalities. Each nationality has its own sport. With the U.S.S.R. so sports conscious, all these different sports combine into one big national effort for the competition against our able and honorable competitors in the next Olympics."

DR. FRANCISCO URRUTIA, Ambassador to U.N. from Colombia
"Our principal sports are bullfighting and soccer. The more typical is bullfighting. The bulls are man-killers. To us it is far more exciting than baseball or football. It is a sport only for the brave and requires the greatest skill and courage. Crowds up to 60,000 pack the bull rings."




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