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Kabaddi is a team pursuit sport, primarily played in South Asia. Kabaddi is derived from a hindi word meaning holding breath. Kabaddi is used as the chant in the game (see below) in most of the world. However, in Bangladesh this is "hadudu", in Nepal "Do-Do", in Sri Lanka "Guddo", in Malaysia "Chado-Guddo" and in Indonesia "Techib". Hadudu/kabaddi is recognised as the national game of Bangladesh.

The name "Kabaddi" is used in northern India: the game is also known as "Chedugudu" in the south and "Ha-du-du" in the east. The game is also known by other names such as: "Ha-doo-doo", "Hu-tu-tu" and "Chhu kit kit". It is also played in many other countries including: Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Malaysia, South Korea, Japan, and Canada.

The game
Two teams compete in Kabaddi, scoring by touching or capturing the players of the opposing team.
Each team has 12 players: seven are on court at a time and five are in reserve.
The two teams compete for higher scores, alternating defence and offense.

The game consists of two 20-minute halves, with a break of five minutes for change of sides.
The playing area is 12.5m x 10m, divided into two halves.

The attacking side sends a "raider" who enters the opponents' half of the court chanting "kabaddi-kabaddi" repeatedly (this is called 'cant' or 'dak'), to show that he is not breathing in.

The raider's aim is to touch and/or wrestle any player on the opposing side and return to his court, all in one breath. The person whom the raider touches will then be out.

The aim of the opposing team will be to hold the raider, and stop him from returning to his own court, until he takes another breath.
If the raider cannot return to his court in the same breath he is out.

Each team alternates in sending a player into the opponents' half of the court.
If a player goes over a boundary line during the course of the play, or if any part of his body touches the ground outside the boundary, he will be out, except during a struggle.

A team scores a bonus of two points, called a "lona", if the entire opposing team is declared out.

Matches are staged on the basis of age and weight.

Seven officials supervise a match: one referee, two umpires, two linesmen, a time keeper and a scorer.

The origin of Kabaddi can be traced to pre-historic times when man learned how to defend in groups against animals or attack weaker animals individually or in groups for survival and food. Though Kabaddi is primarily an South Asian game, not much is known about the origin of this game. There is, however, concrete evidence, that the game is 4,000 years old.

There is a popular belief that Kabaddi originated in the South Indian State of Tamil Nadu. The story of origination of Kabaddi begins by hitting and running of a boy for a candy. The boy who was hit chased the boy who hit him, and hit him back and ran away and it goes on this way. Holding the breath while chasing was an added element when the game evolved. There are various names to this game. KABADDI (Tamil), SADUGUDU (Tamil), GUDUGUDU (Tamil), PALINJADUGUDU (Tamil) and SADUGOODATTHI (Tamil). The word Kabaddi could have originated from the Tamil words KAI (hand), PIDI (catch).

Kabaddi is very famous and popular in Punjab. It is considered by many and by far that the main place where it originated was from the anceint Punjab(which included present day Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir,Rajasthan, and as far as even Afghanistan).

The Kabaddi Federation of India (KFI) was founded in 1950, and it compiled a standard set of rules. The Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India (AKFI) was founded in 1973. The AKFI has given new shape to the rules and it has also the rights of modification in the rules. The Asian Kabaddi Federation was founded under the chairmanship of Sharad Pawar.

Kabaddi is a very popular game in Bangladesh, especially in the villages it is also called the 'game of rural Bengal'. In some areas Kabaddi is also known as Ha-du-du. But despite its popularity Ha-du-du had no definite rules and it used to be played with different rules in different areas. Ha-du-du was given the name Kabaddi and the status of National Game of Bangladesh in 1972.

Bangladesh Amateur Kabaddi Federation was formed in 1973. It framed rules and regulations for the game. Bangladesh first played a Kabaddi test in 1974 with a visiting Indian team, which played test matches with the district teams of Dhaka, Tangail, Dinajpur, Jessore, Faridpur and Comilla. In 1978, the Asian Amateur Kabaddi Federation was formed at a conference of delegates from Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan in the Indian town of Villai.

In 1979, a return test between Bangladesh and India was held at different places of India including Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Punjab. The Asian Kabaddi Championship was successfully arranged in 1980 and India emerged as the champion and Bangladesh as the runners-up. Bangladesh became runners-up again in 1985 in Asian Kabaddi Championship held in Jaipur, India. The other teams included in the tournament were Nepal, Malaysia and Japan. Kabaddi was played as a demonstration sport at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin. The game was included for the first time in Asian Games held in Beijing in 1990. Eight countries took part including India, China, Japan, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh. India won the gold medal and has since won gold at the following three Asian Games in Hiroshima in 1994, Bangkok in 1998 and Busan in 2002.

Source: Wikipedia

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