IELTS Speaking | Watching Sports Events | Cambridge IELTS 9 Sample Speaking Answers

IELTS speaking questions & answers about sports events, sports personalities, sports on TV, famous sports people

IELTS Speaking Sample Answer Part 1 Questions

Let’s talk about where you grew up ...

Describe the town or city where you grew up.

Well, I grew up in the capital city of my country, but although it’s the capital it’s really not that large compared to other capital cities. It only has a population of around 500,000 [five hundred thousand] people, but it’s the business and financial centre of the country as well as the historic capital. There are many historic and interesting places there as well as newer and more modern areas of the city nowadays.

Do you still live there now?

No, I don’t. I left there some years ago, after finishing university and moved to another city to start a new job. I’ve often visited it since then, but never lived there since I left.

Does your family still live there?

Yes, they still live there. Well, my parents still live in the city, actually still in the same house, but my brothers and sisters all live in the suburbs or in places on the outskirts of the city.

Do you think the place has changed much since you were young?

Yes and no. The historic places are still there, as you’d expect, and the city centre hasn’t changed all that much, but the areas just outside of the centre have seen a lot of development and changes over the years and some parts now look very different from when I grew up there as a child. There’s been a lot of commercial development in many zones.

IELTS Speaking Sample Answer Part 2 Topic Question

Describe a sports event you enjoyed watching.

You should say:
  • What event you watched
  • Where you were
  • Who you watched it with
and explain why you enjoyed watching it.

IELTS Part 2 Speaking Answer | A sports event you enjoyed

Well, I’ve just seen the Olympic BMX finals, which were interesting. I went to see them because I used to be really keen on BMXing when I was a kid. I went with a friend to the Olympic BMX track next to the velodrome in the Olympic park in London to watch it. The track was about 450 metres long and it was slightly larger than a normal football pitch. It was amazing to see the competitors doing their laps and jumping and it brought back a lot of memories for me.

[Where you were]
Well, when we finally got into the BMX track after waiting and passing through the security zone just like in an airport, we had to climb up to our seats in the stadium seating, actually the seating was temporary just for the BMX events and then it was dismantled and removed apparently, but it was ok and we had a great view. We were sitting quite far back and high up on the seating platform, but we both had binoculars so that we could watch everything. I think it was really quite a good position as it gave us a clear view of the whole track, maybe better than some of the people who were sitting lower down.

[Who you watched it with]
I went with my friend who lives in London. He invited me to join him and some of his friends for the weekend and as we haven’t seen each other for a couple of months we decided to get together for the weekend. The fact that the Olympics were going on at the time was just a bonus. My friend is from Colombia so you can imagine how happy he was when Mariana Pajon won the women’s BMX event and received the gold medal. Apparently she comes from the same city in Colombia as my friend so he was feeling extremely proud that afternoon.

[and explain why you enjoyed watching it]
Like I said earlier, I used to BMX when I was kid so it was great to watch all the competitors racing round the track because I know what it feels like to do exactly that, well not to compete in the Olympics or anything like that, I was never that good, but you know what I mean. It is an exciting sport to do, and to watch, as anything can and does happen sometimes without any warning. There’s a lot of technique involved as well as physical strength and stamina and it’s nice to see some new sports being incorporated into the Olympics. I think BMX first appeared in the Olympics back in 2008 in Beijing, if I remember correctly and it seems to be very popular as an Olympic event now, attracting competitors from all over the world.

[Rounding-off questions]

Who won this event?

As I mentioned the girl who we saw win the gold medal in the women’s event was Mariana Pajon from Colombia and the guy who won the men’s event was Maris Strombergs from Latvia, who won the gold medal last time too.

Do you play this sport yourself?

Not anymore, but I used to. I used to love it but now when I go biking it’s normally mountain biking rather than BMXing. It’s not as intense and not as physically demanding, well the way I do it anyway.

IELTS Speaking Test Part 3 Questions & Answers

Let’s consider first of all watching sport …

How expensive is it to go to sports events in your country?

I’ve never really thought about that. I suppose it can’t be too expensive because lots of people go to see sports events. I mean every weekend football stadiums are full of people and other popular sports like rugby international matches sell out so I think the cost must be reasonable otherwise people wouldn’t go.

Although, it’s clear that some sports are more expensive to watch than others, for example Formula 1, but there are a lot of sports like Golf and horseracing that don’t cost much to go and see.

Do you think it’s different watching a sports event on TV and going to watch it in person? In what ways?

Yes, obviously it’s different. If you go to see the event then you have the added advantage of the atmosphere and the crowd and being part of something rather than just watching it on TV. Depending on the sports event, that can be quite a buzz.

Look at the soccer world cup for example, or the Olympics. Being there and being part of it is quite exciting, you know, sharing the experience with those around you. On the other hand you could say that some sports are better to watch on TV.

Personally I like to watch car racing or football at home with friends on a big screen so I can see more of the event and watch it in comfort. There are many sports events that I watch on TV that I wouldn’t go and see live in person. Sometimes the TV coverage is better from different viewpoints and positions which is difficult to achieve if you’re there at the event in person.

Do you think there is too much sport on TV? Why?

No. That’s like saying there are too many news programmes or soap operas on TV. Sport is a big part of many people’s lives in most countries and I’m sure that TV companies could show even more sport if there were more hours in a day.

I don’t think you can say there is too much of anything on TV, that’s not really the point. It’s like saying there are too many books in a library or there are too many internet sites. The important thing is if people watch sports on TV, not how much sport is offered by the TV companies.

Maybe how much time some people spend watching sport on TV could be a problem in some cases, but that’s a personal choice.

Finally, let’s talk about famous sports people …

Why do you think sports people often become media stars today?

In a way, sports people who are successful are like heroes, especially for young people so I think it’s only natural that they become celebrities and media stars, as you say, because they are role models.

They show what can be achieved if you have talent, practice a lot, and are passionate about what you do. There’s also the business aspect, you know, a sports person usually has a relatively short career and I think nowadays more than before they brand themselves and market themselves so as to make as much money as possible while they are at the top of their career, because in some case that can be for only a few years.

IELTS Speaking Tip

  • Do some quick brainstorming with a partner; think of two examples and two reasons you could use to answer the IELTS speaking test questions above.
  • Can you talk about the topic in Part 2 for up to two minutes?
  • This is the maximum time you are allowed in the secoind part of the IELTS speaking test.
  • Maximize your chance for a good IELTS speaking score by being able to speak for an extended time on many different topics.