Kabaddi World Cup 2010
This was the Kabaddi World Cup 2010.
It was the third edition of the Kabaddi World Cup but first of Circle Style Kabaddi. First Kabaddi World Cup was held in 2004 followed by its second edition in 2007. Both were held in National Style Kabaddi.
The Inaugural in Circle Style
Kabaddi is the mother game of Punjab. It has been played in this Indian state for centuries. However, Kabbadi went dormant in late eighties and early nineties due to unrest in Punjab.
The end of that dark era ushered a new hope and beginning for this game. Large scale tournaments and championships started to be held not only in Punjab but around the world as well.
An even bigger and better championship had become the need in order to stake claim for participation in an International event, such as the Olympics.
A diligent effort by the Government of Punjab and other stakeholders helped to organize the first ever World Cup of Circle Style Kabaddi.
The Opening Ceremony
Yadvindra Public School’s stadium in Patiala, Punjab was decorated beyond imagination. The stadium was abuzz with thousands of spectators in the stands and high profile dignitaries at the stage.
It was surreal to see Kabaddi players from India, Pakistan, Iran, Canada, United States, Italy, Australia, England and Spain gleefully participating in the march past.
The presence of top Bollywood actors and celebrities provided further charm to the opening ceremony. Indian folk dances from 24 different states and abstract performances by Punjabi folk singers, sprinkled by Punjabi comedy, rendered an awe-inspiring beginning to the unique spectacle of Kabaddi that was about to begin.
Punjab Television Channel (PTC) had the exclusive local and overseas broadcasting rights for this first edition of the Pearls Kabaddi World Cup 2010. This gave Kabbadi enthusiasts around the world, an opportunity to enjoy live Kabaddi for the first time ever.
First Round/League Kabaddi matches
The tournament was divided into two stages, the League and Knockout. In the League stage of the tournament participating teams were divided into two pools, with each pool having five and four teams.
Sixteen Kabaddi matches were played according to the round robin format, with each team playing once against the other teams in the same pool.
Kabaddi matches of the first round of this tournament were played at six different venues. An overview is as under:
Winning the toss, United States chose to go for the first raid. Johnny California of United States had the honor to go for first raid of the tournament and earn first point for his team.First Kabaddi match of the first ever Circle style Kabaddi World Cup was played between India and United States at Yadvindra Public School, Patiala.
India outplayed their opponents in all departments of this first Kabaddi match, leading by 18 points at half time and eventually winning the game 62-25.
Next three Kabaddi matches of the tournament were played at War Heroes Stadium, Sangrur. A crowd of more than fifty thousand descended upon the stadia to watch this unique spectacle of live Kabaddi.
Here’s the Pool standing’s from the first round of the tournament:
The second round of the tournament included two semifinals, a third place play off and a final.
Two semifinals were played on the 10th April, 2010 at Sports Stadium, Bathinda. City of Bathinda is one the prominent town of the Malwa region of the Indian state of Punjab.
It is home to one of the greatest player of Kabaddi, Harjit Brar Bajakhana (hyperlink). Harjeet Brar climbed to the epitome of his career, playing on the dusty grounds of this part of Punjab.
In a tribute, a life size statute of Harjit Brar was erected at the Sports Stadium, Bathinda. A colorful display of folk dance and rich cultural heritage was also displayed before the start of the first semifinal.
First semifinal Kabaddi match was played between Italy and Pakistan. Fresh off their narrow win over United States in the first round, Italian Kabbadi team looked very optimistic. They did display excellent tact and speed.
At one point, an upset win for Italy could not have been ruled out. However, the experience and strength of Pakistan Kabadi team ensured a victory and a berth in the final of the Kabaddi World Cup 2010.
India and Canada locked horns in the second semifinal encounter. India was the title favorites since the start of the tournament and they rightly proved so by winning this match from an equally strong Canadian team.
By virtue of this win, a mouth watering final between traditional rivals India and Pakistan was all set.
Third Place Playoff
Italy and Canada played second last match of the tournament at Guru Nanak Stadium, Ludhiana. A strong line up of Canadian Raiders and Stoppers helped them win the match and earn third place in this Kabaddi Cup.
Arch rivals India and Pakistan played the final of the Pearls Kabaddi World Cup 2010 on 12th April, at the Guru Nanak Stadium, Ludhiana.
The Final Kabaddi match was preceded by a Punjabi cultural extravaganza. Prominent Punjabi singers such as Mamta Joshi, Dolly Guleria, Amrinder Gill and Sukhwinder Singh enthralled thousands of spectators who had come to enjoy live Kabaddi.
India won the toss and elected to go for the first raid of the match. India looked to establish an upper hand right from the first raid. Harwinderjit Singh Dulla Surakhpur earned the first point for their team.
Indian dominance continued with captain, Mangat Singh Mangi earning the second hatrick of the tournament by making successful stops in the 8th, 9th and 10th raid. Indians were leading by 14 points by half time.
In the second half of the match, Indian Kabaddi Team continued with same valor from where they had left off. Pakistan never looked in contention and the difference in their scores went on getting bigger and bigger.
India went on to win the Kabaddi World Cup 2010 final match.
Indian Raider, Sukhvir Sarava, was the most successful raider in the final with fourteen successful raids. Among the Stoppers, Indian skipper Mangat Singh Mangi, made the most stops.
Best Stopper – Mangat Singh Mangi (Indian Skipper)
Best Raider – Kuljeet Masiha (Canada)
The First Kabaddi World Cup 2010 saw a thrust of money that was unseen in Kabaddi thus far. It was as much as an economic success for the participating teams as it was for the Kabaddi game. Following is a list of prizes:
India (Winners) – Indian Rupees 10 million (approximately USD 195,600)
Pakistan (Runners up) – Indian Rupees 5.1 million (approximately USD 100,000)
Canada (Third place) – Indian Rupees 2.5 million (approximately USD 49,000)
Italy (Fourth place) – Indian Rupees 1 million (approximately USD 20,000)
Best Stopper – Swaraj 855 Tractor
Best Raider – Swaraj 855 Tractor
The Punjab Government deserves a pat in the back for the excellent organization of a tournament of such grand scale. A lot of time and effort was spent in upgrading stadiums and infrastructure and making the venues welcoming in look and feel. However, the then Punjab Government also used this event to seize political advantage.
The Kabaddi Cup of 2010 provided a much needed revitalization to the Kabbadi game.