Jalil eyes to retain title

Published : 18 May 2024 09:45 PM

Bangladesh Kabaddi Federation (BKF) is going to organize the fourth edition of the Bangabandhu International Kabaddi tournament with high anticipation when some strong teams will take part in the 12-team competition to start from May 26. 

Bangladesh, the hosts of the tournament emerged champions in the first three editions in a row but there were weigh ups with the strength of the participating teams from abroad. 

But this time the BKF was very much attentive about teams selection when they invited three semifinalists of the two previous World Cup - South Korea, Japan and Thailand and South Korea is among the top four in the world rankings. 

However, Bangladesh team despite triumphing the title of first three occasions of the lone international Kabaddi tournament outplaying the teams from Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America, could not prove their mettle in the Asian Games, when both men and women’s team failed to win even the bronze medal.

The BKF all set to organise the tournament when all 12 teams including hosts Bangladesh and 11 countries from abroad have already been confirmed and the venue of the tournament also fixed, when this time the tournament will take place at the Mirpur Indoor Stadium instead of Volleyball Stadium. 

Meanwhile, Abdul Jalil, head coach of the Bangladesh National Kabaddi team when talking to the Bangladesh Post on Saturday said that their main squad yet to be finalised.

“We are yet to decide our final squad will be for 15 or 18 men from 21-man preliminary squad. There is only a week in hand to start the tournament, we will announce the team by two or three days.”

Jalil, when informed about his team, said, “There will be 50 percent new faces in the 15/18-men squad when as we have selected players, almost half of the players of last year could not make their room.”

“Actually, all the participating teams are strong, for last few years all are improving a lot. If you think about Korea, Japan and Thailand, are stronger than us when Iraq, the neighbours of Iran, one of the top teams of the world are almost equally strong to them.”

“So, the teams of Asia, Europe and Africa are very strong. We have been taking preparation for last two months. In fact we started the camp on March 12 and have two practice sessions in a day.”

“We will try our best to retain the title but it might be a tough challenge for us this time but we have a good side comprised with young and experienced,” Jalil expressed his expectation.

The foreign team scheduled to arrive in Dhaka by 23 and 24rth May and the grouping will be fixed on May 25.