08 August 2014 22:00 | By Charles Brewer
Wrestling with Tradition

From mud to mats



Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
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  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Rupak De Chowdhuri/Reuters)
  • Wrestling with Tradition (© Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)
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With its origins dating back to the fifth millennium BC, traditional Southern Asian mud wrestling, called Kushti or Pehlwani, has been practised across India, Pakistan and Bangladesh for thousands of years. Today though, more and more young wrestlers are beginning to train on mats, instead of mud, in a bid to gain access to top international competitions like the Olympic Games or the Commonwealth Games.

Click or swipe to see India’s and Pakistan’s traditional wrestlers in training and action.

Pictured, wrestlers practise as others rest in the mud at a traditional Indian wrestling centre called a Akhaara in Mumbai.

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