hold one's own
- (idiomatic) To demonstrate oneself to be capable; to provide a respectable performance or worthy competition; to stick up for oneself.
1877, R. D. Blackmore, chapter 6, in Erema: My Father's Sin:
- At any rate, he was like John Bull in one respect: he was sturdy and square, and fit to hold his own with any man.
1904, Joseph Conrad, chapter 2, in Nostromo:
- At the receptions . . . Antonia could hold her own in a discussion with two or three men at a time.
1909, P. G. Wodehouse, chapter 19, in The Gem Collector:
- If it came to blows, the younger man could not hope to hold his own with the huge policeman.
- 2007, David Runk, "Competition Heats Up In Truck Market," Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 4 April, p. E8 (retrieved 4 Nov 2010):
- But Ford, and Chrysler continued to hold their own against the latest competition from the Japanese.