One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A playing card that can have any value, suit, colour, or other property in a game at the discretion of the player holding it.
- ‘Jokers are true wild cards, and can be used to complete any combination.’
- ‘The jokers are not scoring cards but wild cards which can take on any value from 2 to 14.’
- ‘Since they are wild cards, any player holding one will be able to lay it off on the rapper's combinations.’
- ‘You can also make a meld consisting entirely of wild cards - twos and jokers.’
- ‘Jokers can be used as wild cards to stand for any card from three to ace.’
- ‘A natural meld can be turned into a mixed meld by adding wild cards to it.’
- ‘No card is turned for trumps - the only trumps are the four wild cards.’
- ‘Further cards, beyond seven, can be added to a canasta, but if you add wild cards to a pure canasta, this degrades it to a mixed canasta.’
- ‘It seems that wild cards are often used in four-card and five-card brag, but that three card brag is more often played without them.’
- ‘Again, the Jokers are wild cards, and can be played at any time on any trick, with only rare exceptions.’
- ‘In this version all the threes and the two jokers are wild cards that can represent any other card.’
- ‘If the joker is turned up, there are no wild cards and the value of the hand is doubled.’
- ‘The Reds were four games out of the wild card race with 23 games remaining.’
- ‘The joker is a wild card which can be used only as an ace, or to complete a straight, a flush or a straight flush.’
- ‘The jokers may be shuffled into the deck as wild cards as well if you like, which also makes the game a bit more interesting.’
- ‘A meld containing three natural cards can have any number of wild cards added to it, since the first wild card added makes the meld a canasta.’
- ‘Jokers can be used wild cards to substitute for any card in a three or four, with the following restrictions.’
- ‘It was subsequently adopted in versions of Poker, Rummy and other games as a wild card which could be used as a substitute for any desired card.’
- ‘The pack has 132 cards - three suits of different colours each contain 41 letter cards and two wild cards and there are three wild cards that can be used with any suit.’
- ‘If your team starts a meld of wild cards, you cannot add any wild cards to any of your other melds until your wild card canasta is complete.’
- 1.1Computing A character that will match any character or sequence of characters in a search.
- ‘If you can remember only part of a phrase, for instance, you can use an asterisk as a wild card: ‘A Nightingale sang in * Square’ will tell you it was Berkeley Square.’
- ‘Try the asterisk (*) wild card when searching for a phrase.’
- ‘For a complete explanation of OpenSSL ciphers, including all supported wild cards, see the ciphers man page.’
- ‘You can run the program against multiple files by using wild cards in the filename.’
- ‘Many search engines employ wild cards - special symbols, usually an asterisk (*), that you add to a term to indicate different possibilities.’
2An opportunity to enter a sports competition without having to take part in qualifying matches or be ranked at a particular level.
- ‘Hingis will, undoubtedly, be showered with wild cards to enter any tournament she chooses.’
- ‘The young Bulgarian entered the competition with a wild card, thanks to one of the most popular management companies in the world, IMG.’
- ‘‘Yayuk failed to receive the wild card as her world ranking in both singles and doubles event did not meet the qualification,’ Benny explained.’
- ‘As for Cejka, there is much to admire in the German's play from tee-to-green, but one has to think that his relatively poor putting may work against him in the face of such stiff competition for a wild card.’
- ‘Montgomerie, of course, is no certainty to play in the Ryder Cup, but if he fails to qualify, a wild card will surely be his.’
- 2.1 A player or team allowed to enter a sports competition without having to qualify or be ranked.
- ‘Even if this team sneaks into the playoffs as a wild card, it clearly is not a playoff-caliber team.’
- ‘The realignment with four divisions within each conference makes it so that the four division winners plus two wild cards will make the playoffs from both the AFC and NFC.’
- ‘To gain the playoffs as the wild card, a team will need 90 wins, according to the best estimates.’
- ‘The next season gave us the world champion Ravens, a 12-4 wild card team that finished 8-8 in 1999.’
- ‘With two new divisions and no additional playoff spots, the realignment shuffle is going to make it all the more difficult for teams to reach the postseason as a wild card.’
3A person or thing whose influence is unpredictable or whose qualities are uncertain.
- ‘It remains the wild card in an economic game that is still too close to call.’
- ‘The Brotherhood is the wild card in the reform game.’
- ‘We then need to address the role of ‘carbon sinks’, which remain the wild card in the search for flexible, low-cost solutions.’
- ‘He too forfeits, the sex and mystery of a wild card like Coco no longer in his life.’
- ‘One wild card is the uncertainty surrounding the membership of the FCC.’
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