Grammar » B1+ Grammar lessons and exercises » Wishes and regrets – I wish/if only » Page 2
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  • Wishes and regrets – I wish/if only

    Exercise 2

    Choose the correct option to complete the sentences

    Page 1 of 2

    1 I wish I _______ a better job. I don’t enjoy this kind of work.
    a.
    b.
    c.
    d.
    2 I wish you _______ so late. I'm tired of always waiting for you!
    a.
    b.
    c.
    d.
    3 I wish you ______ your bedroom. It’s a mess!
    a.
    b.
    c.
    d.
    4 I wish it _______ raining. This rain is annoying. I want to go out.
    a.
    b.
    c.
    d.
    5 I’m starving. I wish I _______ breakfast this morning.
    a.
    b.
    c.
    d.

     

  • I wish/if only – Grammar chart

    Wishes and regrets – I wish / if only

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    I wish I did

    We can use wish + subject + past simple to talk about things that we would like to be different in the present or future (but that are very unlikely or impossible).

    • I wish things were different, but this is the way they are.  
    • We wish we had enough money to help you.
    • I wish I could be there for you tomorrow.  

    I wish I had done

    We can use wish + subject + past perfect to talk about things that happened in the past and that we regret (we would have wanted them to be different).

    • I wish I hadn’t quit my job two years ago. 
    • I wish we hadn’t wasted all that money. 

    I wish you would do

    We can use wish + person/thing + would + infinitive when we talk about situations that annoy us and would like them to change or to stop.

    • I wish you would stop biting your nails. I hate it when you do it.
    • I wish it would stop raining. It’s been three days!

    We can NOT use this structure to wish about ourselves:

    • I wish I would… blank

    If only

    We can use if only instead of I wish with a very similar meaning. The only difference is that if only is more emphatic.

    • If only I was/were a bit taller!*
    • If only you had followed my advice. 
    • If only you would make a bit of an effort. You are wasting your life! 

    Note that we can use were instead of was with I/he/she after I wish/if only.

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