The eighth edition of the Kabaddi World Cup is set to be held in Ahmedabad in October this year, and India, who have won all the seven editions so far, should repeat that feat. However, this time, India can take home only 8/10th of the Gold medal if they follow the rules put up by the organizers.
2016 has truly been the “year of the immigrants” - the Rio Olympics set an example for ages when the IOC fielded a team of immigrants with the most soul-wrenching backstories under the 'Refugee Olympic team'. However, the land of 'Atithi Devo Bhava' just bettered the Olympic record. Come October, India will be hosting the Kabaddi World Cup in Ahmedabad, Gujarat and will see Australia, Bangladesh, Canada, England, India, Iran, Japan, Kenya, South Korea, Pakistan, Poland and USA take part. However, the nations have some serious pondering to do before they announce their teams for the Cup.
The rules of the tournament have been put up on the site, and rule (i) of the 'Match Rules' section reads,
“Each playing team shall consist of minimum 10 and maximum 12 Players. 7 Players shall take the ground at a time and the remaining 5 players are substitutes.
Each team is mandatorily required to have 2 overseas players in their playing team.
"Only in the case of a team fielding 10 players as their playing squad, a minimum of 1 overseas player shall be allowed in the squad.”
It's not so tough if you are the USA – you could round up two immigrants before you finish saying “A burrito please”. Pakistan could also find its two Kabaddi players going by the number of Indians who have been asked to permanently shift their whereabouts across the border. But, you need to be really kidding if you ask Bangladesh to find immigrants - I mean the inbound kind at least.
Aah! But why such a curious rule for a World Cup between nations? The answer was too simple that it was not even funny. Some under-paid overworked employee of the Kabaddi organization, in all his infinite wisdom, decided to Ctrl C + Ctrl V the rules of Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) – that bi-annual mela that we see on Star Sports.
Rule (i) of the Pro Kabaddi League states interestingly,
“Each playing team shall consist of minimum 10 and maximum 12 Players. 7 Players shall take the ground at a time and the remaining 5 players are substitutes. Each team is mandatorily required to have 2 overseas players in their playing team.
a. Only in the case of a team fielding 10 players as their playing squad, a minimum of 1 overseas player shall be allowed in the squad.”
Such similarity! Much wow!
And then our favorite politicians will get on stage on October 7th for the Opening ceremony at Ahmedabad and proclaim that “we will make our Indian sport of Kabaddi into a truly international sport”. But, when will India stop playing its most favorite sport – Plagiarism.