make a play for somebody/something
make a play for (someone or something)
1. To attempt to attract someone romantically. I know she's way out of my league, but I'm going to make a play for Stacy.
2. To attempt to attain something, often through some kind of plan or scheme. We need a quarterback, so we're going to make a play for Jones in the offseason. Most start-ups are formed in the hope that some huge corporation will make a play for them before they get too big.
make a play for
Try to attract someone's interest, especially romantic interest. For example, Bill has been making a play for Anne, but so far it hasn't gotten him anywhere. [Slang; c. 1900]
make a play for something
If someone makes a play for something that they want, they try to get it. Analysts say the company could soon be making a play for properties around the world. The finance minister dismissed accusations that he was making a play for power.
make a play forattempt to attract or attain. informal
1999 Independent Tracie was seen…heading out for a club to make a play for a cute barman.