Using Collocation to Boost Your IELTS Score – Key Word: Challenge

Key Word: Challenge

1          Verb + challenge

Use the correct form of these verbs:

accept              face                 issue

meet                pose                 provide

  1. Persuading staff to accept new patterns of work is a challenge _________ by many companies that want to develop.
  2. Have you heard the news? Lewis has just _________ Tyson’s challenge to fight for the world title.
  3. The trouble with my current job is that it doesn’t _________ me with enough of a challenge.
  4. We need to modernise this business in order to _________ the challenges of the next decade.
  5. In the near future Frankfurt could _________ a real challenge to London as the financial centre of Europe.
  6. The Conservative candidate _________ a challenge to the rest of the candidates to take part in a public debate. I think they were wise to say no.

2          Common adjective collocations

Complete the sentences with these adjectives:

biggest                direct

legal                     enormous

physical             real

new                      unsuccessful

  1. The Scottish football league is a two-horse race. Celtic is the only team that can offer a _________ challenge to Rangers, the current champions.
  2. Climbing is both a _________ and a mental challenge.
  3. I gave up my job as a doctor after twenty years and became a teacher. I felt I wanted a _________ challenge.
  4. One of the _________ challenges we face today is how to feed the world’s growing population.
  5. After his _________ challenge for the leadership of the party, the Minister announced his retirement from politics.
  6. The firemen’s strike was seen as a _________ challenge to the authority of the government.
  7. After discussions with a lawyer, we have decided to mount a _________ challenge to the decision to close down the school.
  8. Raising the money to build this new hospital has been an _________ challenge.

 3         Big challenges

Match the halves of these sentences:

  1. The British athlete, Mark Wilson, put up a strong challenge
  2. The strike by transport workers represents a serious challenge
  3. Leyton Hewitt is expected to make a major challenge
  4. Designing a computer to beat the world chess champion
  5. The court will face a tough challenge
  6. Real Madrid face a stiff challenge

a in the next round of the competition.

b conducting a fair trial in such an emotional case.

c posed a formidable challenge.

d in the early part of the race but gradually fell away.

e to the government’s pay policy.

f for the men’s title at Wimbledon this year.

Go back and underline all the expressions which mean big challenge



1.         In 1-2 ‘taken up’ is also possible. In I-4‘rise to’ is also possible. In 1-5 ‘represent’ is also possible.

2.         Note these ways of saying you like a challenge:

The new manager says he relishes the challenge of rebuilding the club and winning titles again.

I like the challenge of learning new languages.

He always chooses the most difficult hills to climb because he loves a challenge.

3.         If you ‘throw down’ a challenge you invite somebody to take part in a game, a fight, or a competition.

They threw down the challenge that he couldn’t eat fifty doughnuts in five minutes.




Ex 1:

1.faced          2. accepted           3. provide           4. meet            5. pose             6. issued

Ex 2:

l real      2. physical      3. new       4. biggest

5 unsuccessful      6. direct      7. legal       8. enormous

Ex 3:

l-d        2-e       3-f       4-c       5-b       6-a

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