to be an alternate

Discussion in 'English Only' started by QueVivaPSV, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. QueVivaPSV Banned

    What is meant by 'to be an alternate' in this phrase:
    He eventually asked to be an alternate and was flown with his wife to Los Angeles where the show was taped over the weekend of the couple's anniversary.

    It's from a news item about a retired policeman who won a poker tournament.

    Thank you
  2. panjandrum

    panjandrum Occasional Moderator

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    In this context an alternate (noun) is someone who may be called upon to take the place of somebody else, or perhaps to play if necessary, but not expected to play. In BE I think this would be a reserve or substitute.
    Kosowski wasn't one of those who had been picked to play, but to quote from the link, "In the end, Kosowski was fortunate enough to get to play..." .
  3. QueVivaPSV Banned

    Thank you very much!
  4. JungKim Senior Member

    Is it possible to use "alternative" instead of "alternate" in this sense?
  5. sdgraham

    sdgraham Senior Member

    Oregon, USA
    USA English
  6. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    AE only uses alternate for this specific purpose: a stand-in, subsitute etc. Alternative is not used.

    Collins marks this
    1. US Canadian: a person who substitutes for another in his absence; stand-in
    Cross-posted with the succinct sdg:)

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