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An engaging record of the role played by sports in contemporary culture from Reuters, the largest multimedia news agency.

Sports inspire high emotion and deep loyalty around the world. Live sports and sports commentary are available 24/7 via print, radio, television, and the internet. Sports are an arena of mega-celebrity, big business, towering ideals, and scandal.

Reuters photographers are there to record it all, creating some of the finest sports pictures of our times. Moments of virtuosity, beauty, comedy, tears, triumph, and defeat are captured here in over 500 enthralling photographs.

In his introduction, veteran sports journalist John Mehaffey explores the big themes in sports in the first decade of the new millennium. What does success mean in an age of all-pervasive media, commercial sponsorship, and intense celebrity scrutiny? With constant advances in technology, not to mention the prevalence of performance-enhancing drugs, what are the values of sports today, and what do we mean by fair play? Sports figures regularly play for clubs or teams outside their home country, while others change nationality altogether in pursuit of financial and professional success. Yet international championships continue to give huge importance to national identity. For a talented few, the dream of success offers an outlet from poverty and obscurity.

An illustrated timeline summarizes the sports highlights of each year of the twenty-first century to date. 500+ color photographs.

by: Reuters

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