Two-time champions and favourites India will face South Korea in the opening match of the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup, to be held in Ahmedabad from October 7 to 22.
Besides hosts India, other participating nations in the tournament are USA, England, Australia, Iran, Poland, Thailand, Bangladesh, South Korea, Japan, Argentina and Kenya. The 12 teams have been divide in two groups of six each.
While Group A consists of India, Bangladesh, South Korea, Australia, England and Argentina, Group B will have Iran, Thailand, Japan, USA, Poland and Kenya.
The semi-finals of the tournament will be held on October 21 with the summit clash slated for the next day.
Sports Minister Vijay Goel announced the schedule and also unveiled the logo of the tournament — the famous “Asiatic Lion”.
Goel also congratulated the Indian Paralympians who had won medals in the ongoing Rio Paralympic Games on the occasion. “In Rio Olympics our preparation was very good but we didn’t have luck on our side. But in the Paralympics we are doing very well. It’s a matter of pride that we have four medals in Paralympics. When the paralympians will return we will felicitate them,” he said.
International Kabaddi Federation (IKF) president Janardan Singh Gehlot, meanwhile, said their aim now is to take the sport to the Olympics. “We already took kabaddi to Asiad but now we want to take
it to the Olympics. We want people to play kabaddi all across the world,” he said.