LAHORE.: Pakistan on Sunday made history by becoming the world champions of Kabaddi for the first time after defeating arch-rivals India at the Punjab Stadium.
Pakistan was crowned with the beautifully designed winner’s trophy as it emerged the victor in the final of the Kabaddi World Cup 2020. It collected Rs10 million in prize money while the runners-up team received Rs7.5 million.
The men in green gave the crowd a moment to cherish as they made the traditional rivals bite the dust at their home ground. In doing so, they sent out the message loud and clear that Pakistan is a safe place to visit, play and rejoice.
The hosts trounced the visitors with a margin of 43-41, giving sports aficionados in the country a reason to
celebrate. As Pakistan clinched the game, people holding the national flag broke into impromptu dance (bhangra).
Both the teams had shown their skillful game during the tournament and respectively outplayed their opponents – Iran and Australia – in the semifinals. Crowds had turned up in large numbers to support their teams at a time when both the countries have strained diplomatic relations.
From the Pakistan side, skipper Irfan Mana, Shafiq Chishti, Waqas Butt, Malik bin Yameen, Sajjad Gujjar, and Qamar Butt gave a thrilling performance.
“This victory is not just of the players or the team but of the whole country. The victory attained after defeating India has a different meaning,” said Captain Irfan Mana.
“We were certain to face tough competition from the Indian team in the finals. We are thankful to the Almighty who bestowed us with success at our home ground. Every player made an equal contribution to the victory,” added the skipper.
While reacting on the victory, President Dr Arif Alvi said: “We should dedicate this win to ‘peace’ in the region and the world.”