run (someone or something) close

(redirected from run them close)

run (someone or something) close

To nearly match or surpass someone or something in one's performance, skill, or ability. While he is still the undisputed master of filmmaking in my opinion, there are a few directors who run him close. She finished first to retain her championship title, but the favored newcomer ran her very close—just half a second behind her.
See also: close, run

run someone close

1 almost defeat a person or team in a contest. 2 almost match the same standards or level of achievement as someone else.
See also: close, run, someone

run somebody/something ˈclose

(British English) be nearly as good, fast, successful, etc. as somebody/something else: Germany ran Argentina very close in the final.
References in periodicals archive ?
jjBath + 11 4pts 10-11 general Stade Francais have a crisis at scrum-half for their Heineken Cup match at home to Bath, and the Guinness Premiership side should run them close.
It's told us that if we can go to Manchester United and run them close, we've got nothing to fear from anyone.