Wayanad splash

From mud football to off-road rallying, check out how to make the most of the monsoons.

The faces on the field were unrecognisable, their clothes and age obscured by layers of mud. Despite the shin-high slush, they ran with remarkable agility, shouting instructions, names and curses, their eyes focused on a brown ball being kicked around, creating caramel-coloured fountains in the muddy waters. They chased one another, blocking, tackling even slipping and falling into the muck as spectators stood screaming and cheering along the short bunds surrounding the rectangular playing field. Football in Kerala has always been a craze, but nothing beats the euphoric frenzy of mud football in Wayanad.

Nearly a decade ago, Wayanad was still coming to grips with its branding issues. A tourism official lamented that bus signs would read Bangalore to Kalpetta, Sulthan Batheri or Manathavady, while “Wayanad” largely remained a nebulous hill district somewhere in Kerala. The Wayanad Laughing Thrush, a dull brown nondescript bird not very easy to spot, was hardly a good mascot.

Full report here Hindu


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