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"clutch play" vs "clutch lever"



 
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"clutch play" vs "clutch lever" #1 (permalink) Tue Jul 08, 2008 9:01 am   "clutch play" vs "clutch lever"
 

English Language Tests, Intermediate level

ESL/EFL Test #322 "English Slang Idioms (43)", question 9

The defense's witness' testimony was the clutch ......... for the case. After the testimony, there was no doubt in anyone's mind that the defendant was innocent.

(a) lever
(b) shift
(c) play
(d) slip

English Language Tests, Intermediate level

ESL/EFL Test #322 "English Slang Idioms (43)", answer 9

The defense's witness' testimony was the clutch play for the case. After the testimony, there was no doubt in anyone's mind that the defendant was innocent.

Correct answer: (c) play

Your answer was: incorrect
The defense's witness' testimony was the clutch lever for the case. After the testimony, there was no doubt in anyone's mind that the defendant was innocent.
_________________________

Why clutch 'play'?

Priya Raghavan
Priya Raghavan
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"clutch play" vs "clutch lever" #2 (permalink) Wed Jul 09, 2008 4:05 am   "clutch play" vs "clutch lever"
 

I think the term originates in sports. In baseball we often talk about a clutch hitter, somebody who can make a key hit at a critical stage in the game, and I suspect that's where it originates. However, there can be clutch plays in any sporting game.

Here, they're comparing the court battle to a big sporting event. So the clutch play is the play that saves the game (or in this case proves the defendant's innocence), thus winning the "game" or court battle.

The idea behind a clutch play is a 'make or break' concept. Make the play, win the game. Fail to make the play, and the whole game is lost.

Since the verb clutch means to grasp or hold with the hand, usually tightly, in a sudden manner, then it's not too hard to see how it could have evolved into usage regarding sports, since at a very exciting moment in the game, you might clutch something. But that's just wild guess at the etymology of the term in regards to sports.
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"clutch play" vs "clutch lever" #3 (permalink) Sun Dec 19, 2010 15:36 pm   "clutch play" vs "clutch lever"
 

Hi,

I think your explication was correct. This is two others but similar to yours, from the Net:

1.In sports terminology, "clutch" means performing well under extreme pressure./from Wikipedia/

2.Clutch play
If an activity is referred to as a clutch play, it means that the activity was the key to the success or failure of the venture. For instance, a clutch play in a baseball game may be striking out a batter with the bases loaded. /Using Englihs/

Kati Svaby
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clutch play #4 (permalink) Sun Dec 19, 2010 17:19 pm   clutch play
 

Hi,

Here 'Clutch play' doesn't refer to the sport and this confused me. Though my quotation is right but it refers to the sport. Now I reviewed the whole and I understood that " clutch play " refers to the witness'testimony what was convincing. So the "clutch play" can mean for example a " persuasive argumentation" or its synonyms. Can not it ?
Kati Svaby
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Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.
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Joined: 26 Nov 2009
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