In Homo Ludens Johan Huizinga puts forward the proposition that the advent of modern sport, and concomitantly the beginning of the end of play, can be traced to a specific time and place. He describes this period and process as a transition:
from occasional amusement to the system of organized clubs and matches … The great ball-games in particular require the existence of permanent teams, and herein lies the starting-point of modern sport. The process arises quite spontaneously in the meeting of village against village, school against school, one part of the town against the rest. (1966: 196)
and goes on to outline the factors that helped bring about this development:
That the process started in 19th-century England is understandable up ...