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 Circle Style Kabaddi


History and development

Circle Kabaddi is the regional sport of the Punjab region and was referred to as Punjabi Kabaddi in India and PakistanHowever, with the formation of the states of Haryana and Punjab in India, the same game was referred to as Punjab Kabaddi and Haryana Kabaddi also. 



In the Punjab region, Kabaddi is played on a circular pitch of a diameter of 22 meters and an inner circle with a line through the middle of the pitch: the pitch is called "Kaudi da bharha". There are two teams of 8 players; one on one raid; and no player leaves the field. If 2 stopers attack a player, a foul is declared. Punjab style Kabaddi does not require the raider saying "Kabaddi, Kabaddi" throughout the raid. The game lasts for 40 minutes with a change in sides after 20 minutes.

In the Punjab Circle Style form of Kabaddi, whenever any player is touched (out), he does not go out of the court, but stays inside, and one point is awarded to the team that touched him. The Raid is also played on a time basis, i.e. the time is 30 sec. 


The game of Circle Style Kabaddi shall be governed and played under the following rules of IKF/AKF

01) Ground

Ground will be level and soft.

02) Play Field Measurements

Men and Junior Boys: The play field will have a radius of 22 Meters divided into two equal halves by a mid line

Men: open weight & age no restrictions

junior boys: age 20 years & below (last day of the year) and below 70 kg weight

Women, junior girls, sub-junior boys and girls: the play field will have a radius of 16 meters divided into two equal halves by a mid line.

Women: open weight & age no restrictions

  • ·      Junior girls: age 20 years & below (last day of the year) and below 70 kg weight
  • ·       Sub-junior boys: age 16 years & below (last day of the year) and below 60 kg weight
  • ·       Sub-junior girls: Age 16 years & below (last day of the year) and below 60 Kg of weight

The State Association should furnish original date of birth certificate from the institution. The date of birth and the photograph of participating player should be attested and verified by the Head Master/Principal. The Original Date of Birth Certificate will only be accepted in the Championship.

Random test on players from participating teams will be conducted by the AKFI, from the concerned Institutions. If any Association is found guilty, the concerned State Association Team will be de barred for a period of 3 years from the same year. Achieved position will also be effected and Association has to return the Medals and Certificates to the Federation

03) Boundary

The circle demarcating the radius of 22 meters in case of Men & Junior Boys and 16 meters in case of Women, Junior Girls, Sub-junior boys & girls will be the Boundary of the play field. The Boundary will be marked minimum 3 cm to maximum 5 cm thickness and will be part of the play field.

  • Width of all the lines will be minimum 3 Cm to maximum 5 Cm.
  • It is necessary to have minimum 3 Meters clear space outside the boundaries.
  • There will be no Bonus line and Lobbies in Circle Style Kabaddi.


04) Mid Line:

The line that divides the play field into two halves is known as the mid-line

05) Court:

Each half of the play field divided by the mid line is known as the Court.

06) Pala

Pala is considered to be a gate in the center of the play field. The Pala is demarcated by lines drawn/ marked from the centre point of the midline 3 meters on each side. The total length of the Pala will be of 6 meters. The raider will reach his home court safely only through the Pala/gate. The Pala posts will be mounds of either Lime powder or of some soft material of 15 cm diameter and 20 cm height.

07) Essential limit (Baulk Line):

A line drawn from the Pala post with a radius of 6 metres on each side of the midline forming a D on each side (12mtsX6mts) is the essential limit or the Baulk line. Both the D’s will be joined with straight lines on either side of the midline to form a rectangle as shown in the diagram

08) Cant

The repeated, without break at a stretch and clear aloud sounding of the approved word ‘KABADDI’ within the course of one respiration will be called ’Cant’. The duration of this cant is maximum 30 seconds.

09) Raider

One who enters the court of the opponent with the cant is known as a ’RAIDER’. The raider must begin his cant before he touches the opponent’s court.

10) Anti or Anti Raider

Every player in whose court the raid is being made will be called Anti or Anti raider.

11) Loosing the cant

To stop the repeated and clear aloud sounding of the word ‘KABADDI’ or take in a breath during cant by the raider is known as loosing the cant. A cant must be continued within one and the same respiration for maximum period of 30 seconds only. If a raider takes more than 30 seconds to reach his home court a technical point will be awarded to the opponent’s team.

12) To put out an anti

If a raider touches an anti without the breach of rules of play or if any part of the body of an anti touches any part of the body of the raider and then the raider touches his court, through the Pala with cant and within 30 seconds, the anti is said to be put out

13) To Hold a Raider:

If an anti holds the raider without breach of rules of play and keeps the raider in his court for more than 30 seconds and does not allow him to reach his court until he looses his cant or the referee/umpire blows the whistle, is known as holding the raider.

14) To reach court safely:

If the raider touches his court with any part of his body through the Pala with cant, without breach of rules, within 30 seconds, he is said to have reached his court safely and turn of raid is over.

15) Touch:

The raider touching the anti or anti touching the raider by any part of his body or even the clothing, shoes or any other outfit, is called a touch.

16) Raid:

When the raider enters the court of opponent with cant, it is known as Raid.


1) The team that wins the toss will have the choice of the court or the raid. In the second half, the court will be changed and the team, which had not opted for raid, will send their raider first.

2) In the Circle style Kabaddi a raider can touch only one anti during the raid. Similarly only one anti can try to catch or stop the raider. If the raider touches more than one anti, a point will be awarded against him.

3) No player can take two consecutive raids (one after the other). There will be minimum of one raid gap in between

4) If more than one anti tries to stop or catch the raider, the raider will be declared safe and a point will be awarded against the anti.

5) If any player goes out or is pushed out of boundary or midline during the course of play, a point will be awarded against him and the raid will be declared as over.

6) During the struggle, if any player crosses the boundary or midline first a point will be awarded against him.

7) During the struggle, if both the players (the raider and anti) cross the Boundary or mid line simultaneously, except through the Pala, no point will be awarded to any team. In such a situation if the raider crosses the midline through the pala, he will be declared safe & awarded a point.

8) If an anti who has gone out of bounds holds a raider, the raider will be declared safe and a point will be declared against the anti.

9) A raider will continue to chant ‘KABADDI’ as the approved cant. If he is not keeping the approved cant or he looses the cant in the opponent court or takes more than 30 seconds duration, he will be ordered back and the opponent will be given one point and chance to raid.

10) A raider must start his cant before he touches the opponent’s court. If he starts the cant late, he will be ordered back by the Umpire or Referee and the opponent will be given one Technical point & a chance to raid.

11) If a raider goes out of turn the Umpire or Referee will order him to go back and one Technical point will be given to opponent team.

12) Not more than one raider will enter the opponent’s court at a time, if more than one raider enters the opponent’s court at a time, the Umpire or Referee will order all to go back to their Court and a Technical point will be awarded to the opponent and chance to raid.

13) After a raider has reached his court or is put out in the opponent’s court, the opponents will send their raider within 10 Seconds. Thus alternately each side will send their raider until the end of the game. Incase the raider fails to start his raid within 10 seconds the team looses its chance to raid and the opponent team gets a Technical point.

14) When a raider is held, the anti will not try deliberately to stifle his cant by shutting his mouth, using violent tackling leading to injuries or use of any unfair means. If such incident happens, the Umpire or Referee will declare the raider safe. (For punishment see No. 3 & 4 of the rules under heading ‘Technical Officials’).

15) During the course of raid none of the antis will touch the raider’s court until completion of the raid. In case any anti or anti’s touch the raider’s court before completion of the raid, one point will be given to the raider’s team and the raid will be counted as successful.


01) Team

Each team will consist of 14 Players. 8 Players will take the ground at a time and the remaining six players will be substitutes.

02) Duration of the match

The duration of the time of the match will be two halves of 20 minutes in case of Men, Women, Junior Boys and Junior Girls with a 5 Minutes interval. In case of Sub-Junior Boys & Sub-Junior Girls two halves of 15 Minutes each with a 5 minutes interval. The teams will change court after interval.

NOTE: The last raid of each half of the match will be allowed to be completed even after completion of the scheduled time as mentioned above.

03) System of Play

The out and revival rule will not be applicable. Only points scored will be counted.

04) Productive Raid

Every Raid will be productive either by scoring point/ points/technical point/self out/raider being caught. Even in case an anti or antis becomes self-out, the Raid will be considered to be over and the raider’s side will be awarded a point. If the raider returns safely without scoring or productive raid to his court, the opponent team will be awarded a point. If a raid is more than 30 seconds, the opponent team will be awarded a point.

05) Time Out

a) Each Team will be allowed to take Two ‘Time Outs’ of 30 Seconds each in each half; the Captain or Coach of the team with the permission of referee will call for such time out. The time out time will be added to match time.

b) During the time out the teams will not leave the ground, any violation in this; a technical point will be awarded to the opponent team.

c) Official Time out can be called for by the Referee/ Umpire in the event of any injury to a player, interruption by outsiders, re-lining of the ground or any such unforeseen circumstances. Such time out time will be added to the match time.

06) Substitution

a)     4 Reserve Players can be substituted with the permission of Referee during time out or interval.

b)     Substituted Players can be re-substituted.

c)     If any player is suspended or disqualified from the match, no substitution is allowed for that particular player. The team will play with less number of players.

07) Result

The team, which scores the highest number of points at the end of the match, will be declared the winner.

08) Tie in Knock Out

If there is a tie in the Knock out matches, the match will be decided on the following basis.

i)                Both the teams should field 8 Players in the Court

ii)              Both the teams should give the names of the 5 Different Raiders with their Chest Numbers as per their order of raid to the referee. Substitution of players will not be allowed from the fielded S Players.

iii)            Each team will be given 5 Raids by different raiders to raid alternately,

iv)             The side which raids first at the beginning of the match will be allowed to raid first

v)               Even after 5 Raids if there is a tie, the game will be decided as per the ‘Golden raid’ Rule.

Note If player/players are suspended temporarily or disqualified during the Tiebreaker, the team will play with less number of players.

Golden Raid Rule

  • Even after 5-5 raids, if there is a tie, a fresh toss will be taken and the team that wins the toss will have the chance to raid i.e. ‘GOLDEN RAID’
  • If there is tie even after the Golden Raid then a chance will be given to the opponent team for the Golden Raid.
  • In the Golden Raid the team which scores the lead ing point will be declared as Winner.

09) League System

In the League System the team that wins the match will score two league points and the looser will score zero point. In case of Tie both the sides will score one league point each.

Tie in league points

If there is a tie in the league points scored in the league system, the winner and runner of the pool will be decided on the basis of ‘For and Against Points’ scored by using the following formula

a) The team which scores less than 25% of the league points will not be considered for the ‘For and Against Points’ formula.

b) To decide the tie, the ‘For and Against points’ of the concerned teams against the teams which scored 25% or more of the league points will be considered and the difference calculated.

c) The team which is scoring highest score difference of ‘For and against will be declared pool winner.

d) Even after considering ‘For and against’ points, if there is a tie, the total points ‘SCORED FOR’ only will be counted.

e) Even after this if there is a tie, the result of the match played between the teams is to be considered.

f) Even after this if there is a tie, the highest number of points scored without applying 25% rule will be considered.

g) Even after this if there is a tie, the Winner and Runner will be decided on toss.

Note: Walkover is given to the opponent team by the referee due to late reporting, non-reporting or due to any other technical issues of the defaulting team. Such team will be scratched from the competition and the score of such teams will not be considered to decide the tie. The same rule will be applicable to teams, which concede the match also.

10) If owing to failure of light, heavy rains or any other unforeseen circumstances, a match could not be completed in the same session; such a match will be replayed in the next session.

11) In case of temporary suspension of the match, such match will be continued with the same score and remaining time in the same session. During the temporary suspension the players will not leave their respective courts without the permission of the referee. If a team violates this rule a technical point will be awarded to the opponent team.

12) Nails of the players must be closely clipped and no ornaments of any sort will be allowed.

13) All players must have distinct numbers on their T-shirt of at least 4 Inches thickness in front and 6 inches thickness at the back. The team should follow the dress code compulsorily.

14) Application of oils or any other soft substances to the body will not be allowed.


The maximum age limit fixed is 58 years for the AKFI officials to officiate the matches. After attaining age of 50 years the official has to under go a fitness & performance test of AKFI once in two years. It is mandatory for all the Technical officials of AKFI to possess and carry the following items whenever assigned with technical duties.

  • ·         Electronic Stop Watch
  • ·         Official Uniform comprising Black Trousers, Sky Blue Half Sleeves T- Shirt with collar, White Warm Up shoes
  • ·         Whistle
  • ·         Warning cards
  • ·         Pen
  • ·         Latest AKFI Kabaddi Rules Book

1) The officials will be One Referee, Two Umpires and One Scorer only.

2) The decision of the umpires on the field will be final generally but in special circumstances, the referee may give the decision in the best interest of the game and also if there is a disagreement between two umpires.

3) Gross violations & Foul The referee and the umpires will have the power to warn, declare point against or to disqualify any player or team from the match who is committing any of the following violations or Foul.

a)   Persistently addressing the officials in regard to the decision.

b)   Make derogatory remarks about the officials & action leading to influencing their decision.

c)   Point out finger by the raider or anti for demanding decision of the umpire.

d)   Stifle a raider by shutting his mouth or throat by any way.

e)   Violent tackling leading to injuries to the body.

f)    Takes more than 10 Seconds to start the raid.

g)   Coaching from out side by the coaches and the players,

h)   Preventing the raider to take his turn of raid

4) The referee and the umpire can use the following cards to warn, temporarily suspend, suspend from the match or debar from the tournament a player/ coach/ manager/team.

a) Green Card Warning If green card is shown to a player/ coach/manager/ team twice, then the next card will be directly Yellow Card.

b) Yellow Card Temporary Suspension for 2 Minutes. If yellow card is shown to player/ coach/ manager/ team twice, then the next card will be directly Red Card.

Note: The two minutes suspension of players will commence from the time the player is on court only If the out player is suspended for two minutes than the suspension will begin after revival Teams will not be allowed to revive the next out player in place of the suspended player revival

c) Red Card Suspension from the match or debarred from the Tournament.

5) Duties of the Referee: The Referee will

  •  Take the toss
  •  Announce the score of each side before the last 5   minutes declared
  •  Supervise in general, the conduct of the whole match.
  •  Record the time, start and end the game
  •  Announce the substitution & replacement of players.
  •  Announce the time of each minute of the last 5 minutes of the Second half.

6) Duties of the Umpire

The umpires will conduct the match and give decisions according to the rules of play and matches till the game is ended.

07) Duties of the Scorer

·         Fill in the score sheet & announce the score with the permission of the referee at the end of each half and the result at the end of the match.

·         Make a note of the team winning the toss at the start of the game.

·         All the points scored by all the players of the team will be recorded in running score on their respective side on the score sheet diagonally (/).

·         The team scoring the first leading point will be shown in the running score by square

·         Technical point awarded by the referee or umpire should be encircled (0) in the running score

·         Time out by the teams be indicated by ‘T’ against the team concerned

·         Keep a note of the timing in the score sheet at the beginning & at the end of each half, time out taken by the teams & officials and record the substitutions made.

·         Complete the score sheet in all respects and get it duly signed by the umpires and referee.