This sport is played in Spain and France. A game played in an open-walled arena where a rock-hard ball is hurled against the wall at speeds in excess of 250km/h. Jai-Alai is a game the Basque call ‘‘the fastest sport on Earth’’ because they apparently have never heard of Formula One. The game is played like squash, but a version of squash that could only have been dreamt up by Spaniards. Players sling the ball at a wall using a specially designed wicker cesta basket with a curved glove attached, approximately 65 centimetres long. On the rebound, a player from the opposing team catches the ball in his scooped racquet before flinging it back at the wall. If the ball is dropped, missed or flung out of bounds, or if a player drops his bat and squeals in terror when the ball flashes past his head, then a point is conceded. The first recorded history of Jai-Alai was the building of an indoor arena in 1798 in Spain, and the game spread to Spain’s CentralAmerican and Caribbean colonies throughout the 1800s. It was briefly popular in some parts of the USA in the ’70s, but it’s popularity waned as athletes found other activities more rewarding than trying to dodge a ball moving fast enough to castrate them on impact. An interesting fact: a Jai-Alai ball (called a pelota) can only be used for about 15 minutes before the repeated impacts have torn the skin off it.