play for time

idiom

: to try to make something happen later instead of sooner : to try to delay something
They're just playing for time, hoping that the situation will resolve itself.

Examples of play for time in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In addition to that, the protracted and painstaking negotiations between Lavrov and then-Secretary of State Kerry over the Syrian civil war was a case study for Blinken in how the Kremlin can stall and play for time, a senior official said. John Hudson, Washington Post, 16 Mar. 2023 The council tried to play for time. Ruth Franklin, The New York Review of Books, 11 May 2022 The message emphasizes that such firms just play for time and try to reduce the size of the ransom, neither of which is in the crooks’ interest. David Balaban, Forbes, 21 Oct. 2021 Crown can afford to play for time. Jacky Wong, WSJ, 15 June 2021 Johnson’s goal, analysts said, would be to play for time, delaying any referendum until after the next British general election, which is to be held no later than 2024. BostonGlobe.com, 9 May 2021 The South’s premier college football conferences called a play for time. Alan Blinder, New York Times, 12 Aug. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'play for time.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Dictionary Entries Near play for time

Cite this Entry

“Play for time.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/play%20for%20time. Accessed 20 Apr. 2024.

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