play the ball and not the man

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To attack the ball instead of an opponent who is usually controlling the ball. Often considered a positive action, and sometimes a requirement not to concede a penalty.
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Submitted on January 20, 2019

Additional definitions for 'play the ball and not the man':

play the ball and not the manTo object to someone's argument by attacking the argument itself instead of them or a facet of their personality; to avoid or make the opposite of an ad hominem attack. Usually considered a positive action, and an avoidance of a fallacious argumentative technique. Often used in comparison to play the man and not the ball.
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Nearby phrases

Some more phrases from our dictionary similar to play the ball and not the man

How to pronounce this phrase?

  1. Alex
    Alex
    US English
    Daniel
    Daniel
    British
    Karen
    Karen
    Australian
    Veena
    Veena
    Indian

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"play the ball and not the man." Phrases.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 24 Feb. 2020. <https://www.phrases.com/phrase/play-the-ball-and-not-the-man_42877>.

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