After the big strong beef cattle championship final is over the ring is taken over by big strong men and ladies. The Iverk Tug Of War takes pride of place.

Tug of war (also known as tug o’ war, tug war, rope war, rope pulling, or tugging war) is a sport that pits two teams against each other in a test of strength. Teams pull on opposite ends of a rope, with the goal being to bring the rope a certain distance in one direction against the force of the opposing team’s pull.

The Oxford English Dictionary says that the phrase “tug of war” originally meant “the decisive contest; the real struggle or tussle; a severe contest for supremacy”. Only in the 19th century was it used as a term for an athletic contest between two teams who haul at the opposite ends of a rope.

The origins of tug of war are uncertain, but this sport was practised in Cambodiaancient EgyptGreeceIndia and China.

At Iverk we have a men’s and lady’s event. The men’s teams have eight members while the ladies have six members.

The rules of the competition are very strict. For example, the rope length must not be less than 33.5 meters. It must not be less than 100mm in circumference and not more than 125mm.

The atmosphere around the ring is electric and I have no doubt one could hear the noise a mile away as spectators shout for their ‘team’.

Of course, the event would not be the same without the commentator Tony Coffey. Tony of ‘Batchelors in Trouble’ fame. He is just brilliant and so amusing. Thanks very much Tony.

Finally, Tony invites all the children into the ring for a ‘go’. All great fun. So do come and join us.