Even before Kabaddi World Cup begins this week in Ahmedabad it has been caught up in controversy. The International Kabadddi Federation has decided to bar Pakistan from participating in the 12-nation tournament due to spike in tensions between the host and its neighbouring country.
An India-Pakistan contest has always been one to look forward to and the kabaddi game was no different, however, IKF has decided to exclude the side to avoid getting into any more controversies.
IKF chief Deoraj Chaturvedi, who is from India, said Pakistan has been denied entry because of the tensions. “This is not the right time to engage with Pakistan,” Chaturvedi said.
“Pakistan is a valuable member of the IKF but looking at the current scenario and in the best interest of both the nations, we decided that Pakistan must be refrained from the championship.”
Meanwhile, Pakistan accused the parent body of unfairly targeting the country. “We have called a meeting to discuss this issue but let me tell you that a Kabaddi World Cup is no world cup without Pakistan,” said Pakistan kabaddi federation secretary Rana Muhammad Sarwar.
“This is just like a football world cup without Brazil,” Sarwar said.
Pakistan captain Nasir Ali said his players had been favourites to clinch the cup after defeating India at the six-nation Kabaddi Cup held in Pakistan in May and last month’s Asian Beach Games in Vietnam.
“We were hoping to win the world cup in India by beating India,” Ali said.