Exploring the unexplored sports : Lagori – The Game of Seven Stones

    419

    Background

    In the previous articles on the exploring the unexplored sports, we have seen the history and relevant information of Kabaddi, Kalari and Khokho.

    Exploring the Unexplored sports is a series of articles which would give information about various ancient games not known to the world. After writing three articles on Unexplored sports, this is my fourth in the series of the unexplored games. Here are the links for my first three articles on the topics of

    History of Lagori

    Seven Stones, one of the most ancient games of the Indian subcontinent whose history dates back to the Bhagwata Purana, a Hindu religious text that is claimed to be written 5000 years ago, which mentions Lord Krishna playing the game with his friends. However, the game evolved in the state of Maharashtra and was taken to other nations after it was played in the soils of Maharashtra.

    How is it played ?

    Lagori is played between two teams with a minimum of 3 players and a maximum of nine on each team, using seven stones and a rubber ball. These two sides are termed as hitters and seekers respectively. Running, throwing and concentration are the typical skillsets required by the players of lagori.
    Each team gets nine chances to hit on the seven stones.
    3 players taking 3 chances each, to knock down the stones that are stacked vertically, from a distance of about 20 feets. If one team is unable to knock down the stones the next team gets the chance to throw.

    If the throwing team knocks down the stones, the objective of the team is to stack all the seven stones back. The objective of the defensive team is to strike any player of the throwing team with the ball, below knee level. Players on the defensive team are not allowed to run with the ball and have to pass between players to move the ball.

    If the offensive team successfully stacks the stones first, the team receives a point, and gets to throw the ball again. If the defensive team is able to strike a player first below the knee, there is a change in possession.

    Rules of Lagori

    The three primary rules of this game are very simple.

    • If the person trying to knock down the pile cannot do it in three tries, they are considered out.
    • In any of the three tries, if the thrower’s ball does not knock down the pile and is caught by an opponent after the first bounce then the thrower is out.
    • Hitters cannot run with the ball to hit the seekers.

    (Source:Youtube Video)

    Different Names for Lagori

    This game is played in 20 plus different countries but is known by different names. Its primarily found in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Iran and Afganisthan. In Iran its called as Haft Sang, In Bangladesh its called as Sat Chara and in Pakistan its called as Pittu Garam.

    Gaining Prominence

    Largely, India remains the epicentre of the development of the game. It has provided a bigger platform to the game through the Lagori Leagues. The Indian Lagori Premier League that was held in November 2017 which gathered great momentum across the nation which was organised by the Amateur Lagori Federation of India.

    The lagori world cup is also planned by the sports enthusiasts in India and very soon it would be reality. Unlike other games currently there are not many players known as ambassadors but once the game goes global the success stories would develop.