Uzbek people were known for their strong wrestlers, called palvans. They participated in the formation of Uzbek national sports. Among them are: turon, boyqurgan, kurash and belbogi kurash.
With independence of Uzbekistan, a lot of opportunities for further development of above mentioned national sports opened. Uzbekistan was able to share its sports with the rest of the world.
Every country has its own national sports. For example, in Japan they are: karate, judo and sumo. In Korea they are: sirim and taekwondo. China is famous for its wu-shu and in USA originated popular in the world basketball and baseball. In case of Uzbekistan there are national sports such as: boyqurgan, turon, kurash and belbogli kurash. These types of Uzbek sports are now popular not only in Uzbekistan, but internationally. Significant role played inclusion of these sports in the program of Asian Games. From that time, they became known in other countries.
Out of all Uzbek national sports the most popular is kurash. There is International Kurash Association and local Kurash Federations in about 50 countries worldwide. Starting from 1999, a series of kurash world championships were held. Recently kurash was considered to be included in the program of Olympic Games.
More about kurash….
About the country
In recent years the main teams have participated regularly in international matches and have started to attract well-known players and coaches from abroad. Likewise, Uzbeks players are being courted by prestigious foreign teams. Uzbek football has won an enviable reputation for good sportsmanship. In 2012, the Uzbekistan Football Federation received the highest AFC rating for ‘Fair Play’; in January 2013, it was presented with the FIFA ‘Fair Play’ Award. Individuals, too, are well regarded. The internationally respected referee Ravshan Irmatov (b. 1977) has worked with FIFA since 2003; he has been named ‘Best Referee of the Year’ in Asia several years running. In 2010, he refereed the opening match of the FIFA World Cup (between South Africa and Mexico).
Football in Uzbekistan is not a male-only preserve: the Women’s National Football championship was formed in 1996. Currently there are ten women’s teams. They compete at the domestic as well as the international level. Youth football is also thriving. Along with local clubs and teams, there are national squads for specific age-groups: Under-20 (nicknamed Oq bo’rilar ‘The White Wolves’), Under-19 and Under-18. There is a national table of rankings and awards (i.e. for ‘Best Player of the Year’, ‘Best Coach of the Year’). The youth squads come under the jurisdiction of the Uzbekistan Football Federation and are thus part of the Asian Football Confederation. They have been competing in their respective categories in AFC Championships (since 2002) and FIFA World Cups (since 2003). These matches take the young footballers to countries across Asia, giving them an extraordinary opportunity to experience at first hand other cultures and societies.