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idioms: hat trick

The expression hat trick is often used in hockey and other sports. It refers to the achievement of scoring three goals in a row (or three goals in one game) or of winning three games in a row.

  • Norm just scored his third consecutive goal. It’s a hat trick!

The expression hat trick began in the 1800s when a cricket bowler took three wickets in a row—an unusual feat—and was given a new hat by his teammates.

In other uses, anyone who accomplishes three significant actions in a row can be said to have made or scored a hat trick. For instance, if a business has three successful years in a row, or a filmmaker wins three major awards, that can be referred to as a hat trick.

  • It’s a hat trick for Moira, who has won the Broadcaster of the Year Award for three successive years.