In this photograph taken on August 30, 2019, players of Puneri Paltan hold onto India's Siddharth Desai (C), raider of the Telugu Titans, during the match between Telugu Titans and Puneri Paltan in the Pro Kabaddi League at Thyagaraj Sports Complex in New Delhi. The ancient sport of kabaddi has undergone a glitzy makeover through the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL), creating a new group of sports stars in a country traditionally obsessed with cricket. Image Credit: AFP

Every country has a national sport, and most are well-established – from hockey to football. But there are several sports out there that raise eyebrows and interest, for their unusual techniques and rules.

Click start to play today’s Spell It, where ‘logrolling’ could be considered as one such strange sport.

Here are three unusual sports (that are just as competitive and fun as any other) from around the world that may surprise you:

1. Sepak takraw, Philippines

sepak takraw
A game of sepak takraw. Picture taken at the Visayas State University in the Philippines. Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons/dbgg1979

It looks like volleyball, but observe it a little longer and you’ll find that players are using every part of their body – except the arms and hands – to hit the ball. The Philippines’ national sport, sepak takraw (‘sepak’ from the Thai word for ‘kick’, and takraw from the Malay word ‘woven ball’) is played all over southeast Asia. It’s a showcase of incredible athleticism, as players skillfully manoeuvre with their feet, legs and even chest. The game involves just four players per squad on the court at a time.

2. Kabbadi, India and Bangladesh

As the official sport in several Indian states, and the national sport of Bangladesh, kabaddi or hadudu is an ancient game that originated in Tamil Nadu, India, over 4,000 years ago. It involves a player trying to tag opponent team members while making his way to the opposing zone, all the while avoiding being tackled to the ground. Here’s the catch – the player must accomplish this difficult task while holding his breath! The sport is incredibly popular in the Subcontinent and is played at local, regional and national levels.

3. Tejo, Colombia

Similar to the American lawn game, cornhole, tejo involves players tossing a 600g metal puck (the tejo) – directly at explosives! Raucous cheering from the audience usually accompanies the miniature explosions. The target is usually laced with gunpowder and set in a 45-degree angle, so that it makes a satisfying ‘pop’ sound when it is struck.

Which game do you find unusual and interesting? Play today’s Spell It and tell us at games@gulfnews.com.