Kabaddi – An Introduction To The Sport
Cricket has always been known as India’s major sport. However, the case is changing lately as some other sports are fast gaining popularity and attracting massive fans across the country. One of these sports is kabaddi – a contact sport indigenous to India. Though kabaddi is a common sport in India, firstly this game wasn’t so popular especially in urban areas as it was played only in villages. Even the sport’s international tournaments, such as the Asian Games and World Cup, had a very few following in earlier years – as they lacked adequate TV or media coverage.
However, all these changed when the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) was established. Since its inception in 2014, the PKL has amassed tons of fans and viewers for the sport – shooting it into second place in the list of most-viewed sports in India. In 2015, just a year after PKL was inaugurated, Kabaddi’s viewership was reported to have shot up by 56% and gotten phenomenal ratings and huge revenues. Also, the league was able to raise its number of viewers by nearly 100 million people between 2016 and 2017.
Kabaddi was just a sport that was popular in rural areas, but now it’s a sport that can be a serious competitor even to cricket as it has huge popularity.
Origin of kabaddi
Unlike cricket and football, which the British soldiers introduced during colonial rule, kabaddi is absolutely Indian and it’s also called the ‘game of the soil.’ The sport of kabaddi appeared approximately 4,000 years ago in ancient times. There’s a belief that this sport has its roots in Tamil Nadu – prehistoric India. The game of kabaddi relates to northern India while it is called ha-do-do in eastern India, hu-tu-tu in western India, and in the south of the country it’s called chedu-gudu.
There are four different styles of Kabaddi that are played in India, namely: Amаr, Siranjееvi, Huttuttоо, and Gаmіnее. However, Siranjееvі is the style played in international competitions.
There are various legends about the early years of kabaddi. However, it is widely said and believed that the game was created for the sole purpose of helping young Indian men at that time build their strength, stealth, and speed to launch an attack or defend against group attacks. It was also used to enhance reflexes which were necessary for hunting. Kabaddi is referenced in some Hindu myths, such as Mahabharata – an epic ancient Indian poem that tells of Arjuna, who, with his kabaddi skills, could gain entrance into enemy camps unnoticed, attack, and return without any harm.
The Olympics and Asian Games
The first time when kabaddi received its first worldwide popularity happened in the Olympics that were held in Berlin in 1936. After this, it was included for the first time in the Indian Olympic Games held in Calcutta, 1938. Kabaddi gained more far-reaching recognition follоwіng the еstаblіshmеnt of the All Indіa Kabaddі Fеdеrаtion (AIKF). Since its inception, the AIKF made great efforts to raise the sport’s quality – compiling more definitive rules and organizing the first men and women’s nationals in 1955 – in Madras and Calcutta, respectively.
The Amаteur Kabаddі Fеdеrаtion of India (AIKF) appeared in 1973 to enhance the popularіty of sports in neighboring Indian countries. For instance, the estаblіshmеnt of the fеdеrаtion was the reason for the appearance of the first Asian Kabaddi Championship (AKC) in 1980, where India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Nepal, and Japan participated. India won the tournament after beating Bangladesh – the first runner-up.
Kаbаddі wаs plаyеd in the 1982 Asіаn Gаmеs hоsted in New Delhi as a dеmоnstrаtion gаme – leading to its еstаblishmеnt as the main game in the 1990 Asian Games. India has been known for its fantastic performances in the Asian Games – winning seven finals since 1990 and losing only one to Iran in 2018.
In 2004, India made another hallmark in Kabaddi when it won the first-ever Kabaddi World Cup hosted in Mumbai, Maharashtra. India’s performance in this tournament was outstanding as they were unbeaten against all the teams involved.
The Pro Kabaddi League (PKL)
Despite all the wins of this sport discussed above, kabaddi in India has shallow popularity as the game was regarded by many as a rural pastime and lacked adequate media coverage. The groundbreaking change in kabaddi occurred due to the PKL’s inception.
The PKL is also known as the Vivo Pro Kabaddi due to its sponsorship by Vivo. Inspired by the Indian Premier League (IPL), PKL was established in 2014 and has since revolutionized the state of kabaddi as a sport in India. There were various uncertainties concerning the success of the PKL, however, the league gave a massive boost to the sport by increasing its popularity and drawing major sponsorship deals.
The PKL started presently has twelve teams and has witnessed seven seasons. The eighth season which is currently ongoing commenced on December 22nd and is slated to end on January 22nd, 2022. This league has led kabaddi to the number three sports in the list of the most viewed in India.
Rules of kabaddi sport
The rules of kabaddi are pretty simple. First, you must understand that the game’s objective is to gain more points than the opposing team within the slated minutes. Also, the raider from one team must touch a defender in the opposition team and return victoriously to his half to win a point. Here are some basic rules:
- Kabaddi is played by a minimum of 10 and a maximum of 12 players. However, only seven players for each team are permitted to be on the field at a time. Also, a team is allowed to make only five substitutions during the game.
- There are two halves in a match – 20 minutes for each with five minutes break.
- The game is played on a rectangular pitch of 13m * 10m for a professional men’s kabaddi and 12m * 8m for women. The pitch is divided by a line in the middle into two halves for each team. Note that this measurement may differ with local and international games.
- Both teams switch between raiding and defending during the games and switch sides at half-time.
Betting on kabaddi in India
Due to kabaddi’s high popularity and the great number of enthusiasts amassed in recent years, the rate of betting on the sport has also increased frantically. Kabaddi presently occupies the number two spot in India’s most common sports to wager on, allowing its massive fans to earn income for their passion for the game.
Read more for beneficial information about kabaddi betting here.
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Kabaddi holds a rich heritage through India’s history lane and remains one of the country’s most loved sport. Today, kabaddi has moved from being a rural recreation to becoming one of the country’s most popular and fast-growing sport. Kabaddi also serves as a great betting opportunity via which Indians make money. Visit Parimatch today for the best experience in kabaddi betting.