A national sport is considered to be an intrinsic part of the culture of a nation. Some sports are de facto (not established by law) national sports, as baseball is in the United States and Gaelic games are in the Ireland, while others are de jure (established by law) national sports, as lacrosse and ice hockey are in Canada. These sports do not have to be necessarily the most played or most followed, which would be either association football or cricket in all but a few countries are widely considered to be important to the significant for its culture.
De jure national sports
Sport declared as national sport by a law
|Country||Sport||Year defined as|
|Lacrosse (summer), Ice hockey (winter)||1994|
|Varzesh-e Bastani, Wrestling, Polo||1976|
|Football, Netball, Rugby||2018|
|Paso Fino ("autochthonous sport")||1966|
(Creole [i.e. gaucho] Skills)
De facto national sports
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Ha-du-du was given the name kabadi and the status of National Game in 1972.
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A reconocerse, en 1962, el rodeo como deporte nacional y oficial [10 de enero de 1962, oficio N°269 del Consejo Nacional de Deportes y Comité Olímpico de Chile]
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The government on Monday decided to recognize volleyball as the national sport of Nepal.
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In 1966, the Public Parks and Recreation Administration and the Puerto Rico Olympic Committee awarded official recognition of the "paso fino" horse riding sport as the autochthonous sport of Puerto Rico.
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displays of traditional gaucho skills (destrezas criollas)
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- "Buzkashi: The National Game of Afghanis". Embassy of Afghanistan, Canberra. Retrieved 21 July 2008.
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Director of Sports, Alkins Rogers, […] reported that the Government recognizes boat racing as the national sport of Anguilla and was giving financial resources for its development.
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Cricket, a left-over from the British rule, is the national sport of Antigua and Barbuda.
- Luke, Will (March 2007). "Cricket by association". The Wisden Cricketer. Retrieved 21 July 2008.
Bermuda are one of the few sides who count cricket as a national sport.
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- "Barbados: Sports". Government of Barbados. Archived from the original on 13 November 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2008.
The national sport of Barbados is cricket
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National Game: The national sport of Bhutan is archery.
- THE NATIONAL SPORT OF BHUTAN
- Gonzalez Echevarria, Roberto (1999). "A Cuban Belle Époque". The Pride of Havana: A History of Cuban Baseball. Oxford University Press. p. 76. ISBN 0-19-514605-0.
Baseball is so ingrained in Cuba that it has thrived as the "national sport" through forty years of a bitterly anti-American revolution.
- Mckinley, James C., Jr (26 March 1999). "Baseball; Clash of Cultures, Pride and Passion". The New York Times. Retrieved 24 July 2008.
Most Cubans, after all, consider baseball to be their national sport, a game entwined in history with their struggle for independence from Spain and the birth of their nation.
- Castro, Fidel (13 August 1999). "Speech at a meeting with Pan American Games delegation members". cuba.cu. Retrieved 24 July 2008.
the game that […] is […] our national sport […] I am talking of baseball
- "Danish Football - The National Sport of Denmark". Denmark.Dk, Copenhagen. Retrieved 29 October 2016.
- "A nation that plays the ball- a sport invented by Danes". Denmark.Dk, Copenhagen. Retrieved 18 July 2016.
- "Some facts about the Dominican Republic". Embassy of the Dominican Republic, Washington. Retrieved 22 July 2008.
Baseball is the Dominican Republic's national sport.
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Basketball is the unofficial national sport
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the national sport, "pesäpallo"
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in the first Grenada Cricket Classics [, h]eroes such as Sir Viv Richards, Joel Garner and Curtley Ambrose came together to promote what is considered by many to be the national sport in Grenada.
- "Games". Guyana Tourism Authority. Archived from the original on 6 June 2008. Retrieved 21 July 2008.
Cricket lovely Cricket! One cannot miss out on Guyana's national sport without participating in a game of cricket while in Guyana.
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[E]ven though soccer football was and is considered the Hungarian national pastime
- Pedersen, Paul M.; Thibault, Lucie (2014). Contemporary Sport Management (5th ed.). Champaign, Illinois: Human Kinetics. p. 257. ISBN 978-1-4504-6965-4.
With a total of nine Olympic gold medals, ... some have begun to call water polo the national sport of Hungary.
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- "So What's This Icelandic Handball Team I Keep Hearing About?". The Reykjavik Grapevine. Retrieved 13 March 2016.
Still, the parade [for the national team winning silver at the 2008 Summer Olympics] was even bigger than an Independence Day parade, so we do love handball more than we love freedom.
- Khan, M. Ilyas (8 August 2012). "Pakistan's Olympic humiliation in national sport". BBC. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
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The popularity of Football in Israel is sky-high and is the most popular sport of the nation by a distance. Football in Israel is the unofficial national sport of the nation and developed as an organized sport in the country during the period when the British controlled the administration or was the days of the British Mandate.
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Today's announcement ensures that the public will enjoy quality coverage of our national games across all of RTÉ's media platforms.
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It's [the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final] a big deal in Ireland, where Gaelic games are the national sport, but the problem for the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) is that no-one outside the country, save for committed expatriates, gives a fig.
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The legacy of Britain also lives on in Jamaica in many ways […] the game of cricket is the national sport.
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Lithuania is a country that loves basketball. It is our national sport and we are proud to be reigning European Champions.
- Winn, Luke (15 August 2011). "Lithuania Calling". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
Basketball is the only sport the 3.2 million Lithuanians truly care about—it's their second religion, after Catholicism—and their success is proportionately stunning.
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Traditionally New Zealanders have excelled in rugby union, which is regarded as the national sport, and track and field athletics.
- Mølster, Odd (1996). "Skiing and the Creation of a Norwegian Identity – part 2". News of Norway, issue 2. Norwegian Embassy, Washington. Retrieved 21 July 2008.
the national sport could become a fine weapon in time of war. In 1943, Norway's resistance movement won an epochal victory – on skis, of course
- Berglund, Nina (20 February 2006). "Few cheers for Norway". Aftenposten. Archived from the original on 21 February 2006. Retrieved 21 July 2008.
The scoreboard shows how the Norwegians placed, a performance considered much too poor in a country where cross-country skiing is a national sport.
- "PNG vow to upset World Cup odds". Rugby League. Federación Peruana de Frontón. 15 October 2008. Retrieved 3 July 2009.
But it would still be one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history if Papua New Guinea – the only country to have rugby league as its national sport – were to qualify for the last four.
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- "Oina – sportul naţional uitat" (in Romanian). Adevărul Holding. 18 September 2010. Retrieved 21 November 2012.
Dar nici deciziile luate de autorităţile comuniste nu au salvat sportul naţional românesc de la uitare.
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Baseball justified its privileged legal status by citing the special nature and cultural significance of America's national pastime.
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Tradition – that quality so instrumental in elevating baseball to its century-old status as national pastime— has become less important
- Gmelch, George (2006-01-01). Baseball Without Borders: The International Pastime. p. 308. Retrieved 2014-07-09.
- Gmelch, George (2006-01-01). Baseball Without Borders: The International Pastime. p. 308. Retrieved 2014-07-09.
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- Harris, John (Summer 2006). "(Re)Presenting Wales: National Identity and Celebrity in the Postmodern Rugby World" (PDF). North American Journal of Welsh Studies. North American Association for the Study of Welsh Culture and History. 6 (2). Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 September 2008. Retrieved 14 July 2008.
rugby used to be the undisputed national sport of Wales […] Rugby Union's assumed position as "the national game" has often been questioned on the basis that it is predominantly a game played and followed in South Wales.