In France we have a national sport : La Pétanque !! We are unbeatable Pétanque
[pe.tɑ̃k] in French) is a form of boules
where the goal is to throw metal balls as close as possible to a small wooden ball called a cochonnet
(jack). The game is normally played on hard dirt or gravel, but can also be played on grass or other surfaces. Sandy beaches are not suitable. Similar games are bocce
Pétanque is generally associated with southern France
, particularly Provence
, whence it originates. It is the most played sport in Marseille
. The casual form of the game of Pétanque is played by about 17 million people in France (mostly during their summer vacations).
Pétanque is reputed to have been invented in 1907
in the town of La Ciotat
near Marseilles as a less physically-demanding form of jeu provençal
. Physical effort was reduced by shortening the length of the pitch by roughly half and replacing a moving delivery with a stationary one. The name is derived from the term pés tanqués
, which in the Provençal
language means "stuck feet", because in Pétanque the feet have to remain fixed together within a (small) circle.