World Kabaddi hope to restart their international calendar with the World Cup Kabaddi later this year. The championships to be hosted in Glasgow, Scotland earlier this year was deferred because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
If the current situation that is easing in most parts of the world, clears up soon, the World Cup 2020 is likely to take place in November.
The World Cup Kabaddi 2020 is to be hosted jointly by the Scottish Kabaddi Association (SKA) and the English Kabaddi Association (EKA).
“We are keeping our fingers crossed that we can host the tournament in November. But that depends on the health clearance from both the host country and the ability for teams to travel to Glasgow,” said World Kabaddi president Ashok Das.
The inaugural World Cup Kabaddi was held in Melaka, Malaysia last year and efforts to host the second tournament in Glasgow was going on smoothly until the emergence of the coronavirus that derailed all sports around the globe.
Both the SKA and the EKA successfully hosted the European Kabaddi Championhips last year and hosting the World Cup 2020 was a natural step forward.
Since the World Kabaddi was formed in 2018, the sport is seeing rapid growth outside the Asian continent, the kingpins of the sports.
In Europe, is growing rapidly with England, Scotland, Denmark, Norway, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Sweden, Poland and Cyprus among the countries promoting and developing the sports. Efforts are also being undertaken by Kabaddi Europe to introduce the game to more countries in the continent.
“The European Championships was an eye opener and hosting the World Cup will open a new chapter for the sport in the continent. It would also help us attract newer sponsors from the region,” said Ashok.
On the assumption that the current pandemic does not ease up within the next couple of months, the World Cup Kabaddi 2020 would be pushed to the first quarter of 2021.
“Kabaddi does not enjoy the same status as other major sports like football and needs competitions for us to continue to promote and develop the sports,” said Ashok.
He added that the World Kabaddi has been encouraging its members to start planning not only for international tournaments but also domestic events.
Like the World Cup, the African Kabaddi Championships is also scheduled for later this year in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.
The Tanzania Kabaddi Federation have been working earnestly to host the tournament and are also anxiously hoping for the pandemic to ease. The championships is likely to see the participation of most of the African members including Tanzania, Kenya, Egypt, Mauritius, Cameroon, Nigeria and Zimbabwe.
There are also plans to host the Asia-Oceania Kabaddi Championships next year.
While the Covid-19 has delayed the plans laid out for 2020, World Kabaddi is confident that it would be firing on all systems in the new year.