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Kabaddi is a very popular game played in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh and is considered as the 

national sport of Pakistan as well as a ‘sub-continent’ sport. As a national sport, it is mainly played in 

rural areas but you can also find many Kabaddi fans in urban areas as well.

Kabaddi dates back to pre-historic times and was played in South Asia in different forms and under 

different names. After seeing the popularity of this game, the first official Kabaddi Federation of Indian 

(KFI) was founded in 1950, and established rules and regulations for the sport. The Pakistan Kabaddi 

Federation was formed in 1964, and the first Asian Kabaddi Championship was held, in 1980. Although a 

popular South Asian sport, the first match was held in Hamilton, Canada where there were roughly 

14,000 people from India, Pakistan, Canada and England. Following 1980, the first time Kabaddi was 

included as a competitive sport was during the Asian Games in Beijing in 1990. However, there was no 

Kabaddi world cup until it was organized in Mumbai India in 2004 and the most recent Kabaddi world 

cup (5th world cup) was held in 2014.

Kabaddi is a very interesting game, and the movements are similar to rugby, but the rules and way it is 

played is very different. In Kabaddi, there are two teams of seven players each with five additional 

players who are held in reserve. Each team has half the field and the game is organized in two halves – 

20 minutes each. When one half finishes, there is a 5 minutes break and then the teams switch sides. 

From your team, you have to send one player to other team’s court to “raid.” The raider starts from the 

centerline, and runs towards the opponent court trying to touch opponents on the way. The number of 

people he touches while trying to reach the goal, is the number of points received, however if the 

individual is not able to reach the other side then zero points are received. The defense players are 

called “antis”.

The game of Kabaddi requires a lot of skill, athleticism, stamina and speed. It is a very popular and well-

liked sport amongst the masses. It is played by both, men and women. The field is about 12.5 by 10 

meters and is divided by mid line separating it into two halves. There have been some recent changes to 

the game, which have bought it indoors and played on mat surfaces. 

Kabaddi is a very interesting sport, and games can be viewed online as well.

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