(Photo Courtesy - Tshering Samdrup)

Keeping the national game alive in the US

To cherish the game of archery, the national game of the country and enjoying leisure hours at the same time, Bhutanese enthusiasts of the sport living in the USA make it a point to organize or participate in tournaments, especially over weekends.

This time around, eight teams comprised of Bhutanese residing in the east coast of US recently played a competition named ‘Open Yangphel Style Tournament 2013, New York (NYC)’

The Yangphel-style tournament is considered as one of the most popular archery competitions here at home.

Organized by the local Bhutanese volunteers in NYC, the final match of the latest tournament was played on October 13, last week to commemorate the second Royal Wedding Anniversary.

Team 5 Masters, winners of the contest took home USD 1,500 as price money. Team Drukgyel earned the runners-up position followed by Team Charo 5 in third place.

Thinley from the runners-up team bagged the title of best player and also scored the highest hits (Kareys) during the tournament.

Tshering Samdrup from team Drukgyel who is currently undergoing a course on professional photography in NYC said, “Being the national game played around the country, Bhutanese here often play the game and take extra interest when it comes to archery, and it is very much popular among Bhutanese living here.”

Moreover, he said it also facilitates in the preservation of Bhutanese culture and at the same time promotes the national game.

Archery matches are organized on almost all occasions such as New Years, Losars and national holidays among others.

The participants in the tournament make it a point to wear the national dress and follow cultural norms of the game in every tournament such as awarding of scarves (dhar) to all players, each time they hit the target. To make it more home-like, cheer leaders also part takes in the games.

“Nothing is different” Tshering said.

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