Kokpar: An ancient Central Asian sport

In Kazakhtan, Kokpar – known elsewhere in Central Asia as buzkashi (Afghanistan), kok boru (Uzbekistan) or ulak tyrtysh (Kyrgyzstan) – is a sport involving dozens of riders in what looks to outsiders like a brawl over a goat carcass. The winning side is the one that delivers the carcass (or head) into a specified pit the most times. Other than that there are few rules. The film below shows also that there is no specified limit to how far riders will travel in order to defeat their adversaries. I once saw a match in Bamiyan, Afghanistan, where the riders disappeared over the horizon, not to return for around 40 minutes. Enjoy!

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