If I worked it just right, this could be about chickens engaging in football or something.
But no, it’s more likely about the darkness in the human heart, they who would intend shadowy shenanigans, some interference with the status quo. I’m sure there would be hardboiled detectives, and a femme fatale, along with nefarious hijinx galore.
It suggests the sort of play that stout-hearted hero types would never engage in, they probably prefer their play to be morally inoffensive rather than morally ambiguous.
“He met with foul play” as though it was a blind date of the sort where one party has misrepresented themselves as definitely not foul, only to discover upon arrival that they probably used a fake picture for their profile, and almost certainly don’t consider bowling and karaoke a viable first date.
It’s only my love of noir, solid mysteries, and delving into the depths of what the human psyche is capable of which sends me into a place of foul play being synonymous with some sort of intentional crime. To a sportsing person, the crime would be a ball sent out of bounds, a denial of the fair play necessary to give everyone playing an even chance to score. Within that context, we could superimpose this concept into the realm of nearly anything, considering that the system we exist is unfairly stacked against those who don’t fit into particular demographics as set forth by a very narrow subsection of humanity.
Can we just smash the patriarchy already?
As the great Billie Jean Davy said, “Fair is fair.” And so it is.