Fact or fool?

To mark April Fools' Day, we came up with seven mischievous teasers that will leave you wowed and wondering about the sporting world

01 April 2016 News

Some seem too good to be true – scroll along to reveal the fact or fool.

1896 olympic poster

Fact or fool?

At the first Modern Olympic Games held in Athens in 1896, first-place winners were awarded silver medals.

1896 olympic silver medal

FACT

Gold was only introduced as the top accolade at the 1904 Summer Olympics in St. Louis, Missouri in the United States.

football association rulebook

Fact or fool?

In the original set of rules for what we know today as Association Football, written in 1858, goalkeepers were not allowed to use their hands.

goalkeeper placing ball

FOOL

Goalkeepers were allowed to use their hands, as indeed were outfield players, who were allowed to punch the ball, and in some cases catch it.

human bent over start line pose

Fact or fool?

Humans can beat almost every animal over a marathon distance.

man versus horse

FACT

While antelopes and cheetahs are built for speed, nature’s best animal distance runners, such as horses and dogs, will only run 26.2 miles if forced to do so. Humans remain the only living creature to have the ability or desire to last the distance.

spaceman golf

Fact or fool?

American Astronaut Alan Shepard played golf on the Moon after he smuggled a golf ball and club on to the NASA Apollo 14 mission to the Moon in 1971.

Spaceman playing golf on the moon

FACT

Alan hit two golf balls on the lunar surface and became the first – and, thus far, only – person to play golf anywhere other than Earth.

women yoga instructor

Fact or fool?

The percentage of women doing yoga once a week went up an impressive 10% in the last year.

women yoga

FOOL

The increase was actually more than double and went up a remarkable 21%, according to our latest Active People Survey results. 337,100 women now do yoga at least once a week.

wimbledon 1922 crowd

Fact or fool?

The shortest match in tennis history was played in the women’s 1922 Wimbledon Open final and lasted a mere 45 minutes.

Suzanne Lenglen overhead shot

FOOL

Frenchwoman, Suzanne Lenglen, was even more efficient than that and dispatched of Molla Mallory in just 23 minutes. Mallory actually took two games in the first set – but was ultimately seen off rather swiftly.

geese cocking heads

Fact or fool?

The best shuttlecocks are made from the feathers from the left wing of a goose.

shuttlecock mid-flight

FACT

A shuttle can only have feathers from one side of the goose – unless it’s a plastic shuttle, of course. The natural curvature of feathers from the left lends itself to better flight action.