KHUJAND, January 4, 2009, Asia-Plus  -- Abduali Abdumannonov, head of the Collective Farm named after Jumayev in Sughd’s Bobojonghafurov district, won Buzkashi (goat grabbing) that was held in the Qistaqouz jamoat (community) of the Bobojonghafurov district on December 28.  The main prize of the competition, a purebred foal, was presented to him.

According to the Sughd nature-lovers’ association, some 300 riders from Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan gathered in the Sughd province to participate in Buzkashi in Qistaqouz.

In all, 25 prizes were provided and three of them were won by riders from Kyrgyzstan.  Among them was prosecutor of Sulyukta district in Kyrgyzstan’s Batken region.

“The majority of prizes were won by Tajik riders,” the source at the Sughd nature-lovers’ association said.

Buzkashi (goat grabbing) is a traditional Central Asian team sport played on horseback. The steppes’ people were skilled riders who could grab a goat or calf from the ground while riding a horse at full gallop.  The goal of a player is to grab the carcass of a headless goat or calf and then get it clear of the other players and pitch it across a goal line or into a target circle or vat.

The game is known as Buzkashi in Tajikistan and Afghanistan and among Persian-speaking populations of Central Asia, while in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, the game is referred to as Kok-boru or Ulak Tartysh.