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Difference between Be a close call and Be too close to call

be a close call —(also: be a close shave) said of a dangerous situation that a person just manages to avoid:

  • Though he escaped with his life and his job, it was a close call.

be too close to callsaid of the outcome of a competition, etc. that is very hard to judge:

  • The horses came to the finish line in a dead heat, and, without a photograph, the results were too close to call.

Note: The expression does not correlate in meaning with the phrase be too close to home—(also: be too close for comfort) dangerously nearby; affecting a person intimately:

  • A crime that occurred too close to home still has its grip on Chief Inspector Alan Banks.