End of Play: Definition, Meaning, and Origin

Last Updated on
February 29, 2024

"End of play" is a phrase with its origins in sports, especially cricket, referring to the conclusion of play for the day. In a broader context, it signifies the end of an activity, event, or process. The phrase is often used metaphorically in various situations, such as in business or personal projects, to indicate that work or activity has ceased or reached a final state.

In short:

  • Originally a sports term, particularly in cricket, indicating the conclusion of play for the day.
  • It is used more broadly to signify the end or completion of an activity or process.

What Does "End of Play" Mean?

"End of play" is a term used to denote the conclusion of an activity, event, or day’s proceedings. In cricket and some other sports, it specifically refers to the end of play for the day, signaling that the game or match is paused until the next scheduled period of play. In general usage, it marks the completion of an activity or the point at which no further action takes place. This phrase is often used in business and other settings to set a deadline or indicate when activities should be concluded.

More about the phrase's meaning:

  • Implies a definitive stopping point or conclusion.
  • It can be used as a deadline in various contexts, indicating when tasks or activities should be completed.
  • It reflects the final state of a process or activity.
  • It often signifies the end of a day’s work or session.
  • In sports, it's a technical term indicating the scheduled conclusion of play.

Where Does "End of Play" Come From?

The phrase "end of play" has its roots in sports, where it's used to describe the conclusion of a day's sporting activities. It is particularly associated with cricket, a sport with matches that can span multiple days. Each day of a cricket match has a scheduled 'end of play,' after which the players and officials leave the field until the next day of play. This term has been adopted in various other fields to convey a similar sense of concluding activities.

10 Examples of "End of Play" in Sentences

Here are ten examples to illustrate the use of "end of play":

  •  By the end of play, pulling the trigger on key decisions is crucial to ensure the team's success.
  • The meeting was scheduled to finish by the end of play.
  • The score was tied by the end of play, leading to an exciting final day of the match.
  • Oh yeah, by the end of play, the momentum had shifted, signaling a promising outcome for the underdogs.
  • To take your leave by the end of play symbolizes a well-earned rest after a day's hard work and achievements.
  • The sales figures for this quarter will be announced at the end of play.
  • We aim to have all the data analyzed by the end of play tomorrow.
  • Today's end of play on the stock market saw a significant rise in share prices.
  • Each team member deserves a pat on the back by the end of play for their dedication and hard work throughout the day.
  • Organizing a potluck party by the end of play is a great way to celebrate teamwork and unwind after a challenging and productive day.

Examples of "End of Play" in Pop Culture

While "end of play" is a term rooted in sports, its usage can sometimes be found in pop culture, particularly in contexts involving competitions or deadlines.

Pop culture examples:

  • ZQQX's music album "End of Play" offers an experimental sound journey, inviting listeners into a unique auditory experience.
  • A librarian's plea for the removal of play areas from libraries, arguing for a return to quiet and focus, sparked a debate on the role of libraries in "Meant to be silent": Librarian wants to see the end of play areas in libraries.
  • Ian Brayshaw's book, "End of Play - Caught Marsh Bowled Lillee," delves into cricket, focusing on the careers of cricketers Rod Marsh and Dennis Lillee.
  • The song "Endgame" from the musical Chess, penned by Björn Ulvaeus & Benny Andersson, captures a chess player's resignation to defeat with the line: "There is nothing more to do. No hope, no way. To save the game. The end of play."

Synonyms: Other/Different Ways to Say "End of Play"

Alternative expressions with a similar meaning:

  • Close of play
  • End of the day
  • Conclusion
  • Wrap-up
  • Finishing time
  • Cutoff point
  • Deadline
  • Completion
  • Final whistle
  • Closing time

10 Frequently Asked Questions About "End of Play":

  • What does "end of play" mean?

"End of play" refers to the conclusion or finishing point of an activity, often used to indicate the end of a day's work or a sports match.

  • Is "end of play" a formal expression?

It is a somewhat formal expression, but it is widely understood in both formal and informal contexts.

  • Can "end of play" be used in a business setting?

Yes, it's often used in business to set deadlines or to refer to the end of a workday.

  • Does "end of play" only apply to sports?

While it originates from sports, it's now used more broadly in various contexts.

  • How can I use "end of play" in a sentence?

You can use it to refer to a deadline, as in "The project needs to be completed by the end of play today."

  • Is "end of play" used globally?

Its use is most common in countries where cricket is popular, but it's understood in many English-speaking regions.

  • Can "end of play" be used in casual conversation?

Yes, it can be used casually to refer to the end of any activity or day.</em >

  • Is "end of play" an old-fashioned term?

It's a traditional term, but it remains in use and relevant today.

  • Does "end of play" imply a final conclusion?

Yes, it implies a definitive end to an activity or period.

  • Can "end of play" refer to a time of day?

Yes, it often refers to the end of the workday or the conclusion of a day's activities.

Final Thoughts About "End of Play"

"End of play" is a versatile idiom that can signify the conclusion of various activities, from sports matches to business projects. Its usage extends beyond its sporting origins, making it applicable in various contexts to denote finality or completion.

To recap:

  • Originally a sports term, it is now used more broadly.
  • It indicates the conclusion or deadline of an activity or process.
  • It is applicable in both formal and informal settings.
  • It is useful for conveying a sense of finality or completion.

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