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

Key Word: luck

1          Verb + luck

Use the correct form of these verbs:

believe                           bring

hold                                push

run out of                    trust

wish                               have

  1. So far I haven’t __________ any luck finding a job. I haven’t had one interview yet.
  2. She wears some kind of charm around her neck. She thinks it’ll __________ her luck.
  3. I could hardly __________ my luck when I found my wallet still lying in the middle of the road where I dropped it.
  4. The prisoner evaded police for four days, but he eventually __________ luck when he was caught on video stealing food from a small store.
  5. However hard you prepare for an exam, you still have to __________ to luck to a certain extent. Last year I was in luck when one of the essay titles I had prepared came up in the final examination.
  6. At my leaving party my boss shook my hand and __________ me luck in my new career.
  7. The team are playing well and if their luck __________ they could win the cup and the championship.
  8. You didn’t get caught last time, but don’t __________ your luck! You might not be so lucky next time.

2          Common adjective collocations

Choose the more natural collocation in the sentences below:

  1. Superstitious people believe that if you walk under a ladder, it brings you __________ luck. (bad / poor)
  2.  __________  luck with your driving test tomorrow! (great / good)
  3. You say ‘Oh, __________ luck’ to somebody to express sympathy with them when something unlucky has happened to them. (hard / terrible)
  4. It was __________ luck that we met. I wasn’t even supposed to be in London that day. (complete / sheer)
  5. __________ luck next time! I’m sure with a little extra practice you’ll be able to beat him. (better / greater)

 3         Useful expressions

Use these expressions in the sentences below:

for luck                       in luck                out of luck

  1. You’re__________ ! We’ve got one pair of these shoes left in your size in black.
  2. I always wear this cross round my neck __________ .
  3. I’m sorry, you seem to be __________. We don’t have this model in stock at the moment.

by a stroke of luck                  a run of luck

with a bit of luck                     your lucky day

  1. This is__________ ! We’ve just had a cancellation. The dentist can see you this morning.
  2. __________ someone was passing, heard my mother shouting for help and called the police.
  3. I had __________ at the casino last night, but in the end I lost more than I won.
  4. Come on, this isn’t a difficult climb. We’ll be back in time for dinner __________ .



In 2-3 ‘bad’ or ‘tough’ luck are also possible.

In 2-4 ‘pure luck’ is also possible.

2.         Note how we ask if somebody has been successful:

Have you had any luck with your job-hunting?

Any luck with your flat-hunting?

3.         If you’re ‘down on your luck’, you are in need of money after a period of bad luck:

I bought the car from a friend who was down on his luck.

4.         We often reassure people that life will get better:

Perhaps your luck will change. You never know!

5.         When we say ‘Some people have all the luck!’, we wish we had what they had:

I’ve just won £10,000 on the lottery! => Some people have all the luck!



Ex 1:

  1. had    2. bring    3. believe    4. ran out of    5. trust    6. wished    7. holds    8. push

Ex 2:

  1. bad      2. Good      3. hard             4. sheer            5. Better

Ex 3:

  1. in luck
  2. for luck
  3. out of luck
  4. your lucky day
  5. By a stroke of luck
  6. a run of luck
  7. with a bit of luck

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