Excerpt from the Book Sports the Olympics Forgot This book describes 40 sports that ought to be played but aren’t, because I made them up.
The Mongols created the world’s second largest empire. Their cavalry were a fearsome sight as they headed westwards to invade Russia and eastern Europe. What most impressed the peasants around Kazan was the soldier’s dexterity on horseback both with bows and arrows and with swords.
One day a peasant discovered a discarded Mongol sword and quickly found out how sharp it was. Once he stopped the bleeding his practical streak emerged and he realized that he could cut most of the vegetables from his garden very easily with the sharp blade. Only the larger potatoes were still difficult to cut – however, the peasant then had a brainwave – if he were sitting on a horse then he would be able to swing a lot harder and with more force and cut the potato in two.