Bocce is a ball sport belonging to the boules family, closely related to British bowls and French pétanque, with a common ancestry from ancient games played in the Roman Empire. Developed into its present form in Italy (where it is called bocce, the plural of the Italian word boccia which means 'bowl' in the sport sense), it is played around Europe and also in overseas areas that have received Italian migrants, including Australia, North America, and South America. Bocce was initially played among the Italian migrants but has slowly become more popular with their descendants and the wider community.
How to play
A match is started by a randomly chosen side being given the opportunity to throw a smaller ball, the jack, from one end of the court into a zone 5 metres (16 ft) in length, ending 2.5 metres (8.2 ft) from the far end of the court. The side that places the jack is given the opportunity to bowl first. Once the first bowl has taken place, the other side has the opportunity to bowl. From then on, the side which does not have the ball closest to the jack has a chance to bowl, up until one side or the other has used their four balls. At that point, the other side bowls its remaining balls. The team with the closest ball to the jack is the only team that can score points in any frame. The scoring team receives one point for each of their balls that is closer to the jack than the closest ball of the other team. The length of a game varies by region but is typically from 7 to 13 points. Players are permitted to throw the ball in the air using an underarm action. This is generally used to knock either the jack or another ball away to attain a more favorable position.