Kerala
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Kerala Sports

Several ancient ritualised arts are Keralite in origin. These include kalaripayattu-kalari ("place", "threshing floor", or "battlefield") and payattu ("exercise" or "practice"). Among the world's oldest martial arts, oral tradition attributes kalaripayattu's emergence to Parasurama. Other ritual arts include theyyam and poorakkali. However, larger numbers of Keralites follow sports such as cricket, kabaddi, soccer, and badminton. Dozens of large stadiums, including Kochi's Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium and Thiruvananthapuram's Chandrashekaran Nair Stadium, attest to the mass appeal of such sports among Keralites.
Kerala has been the athletics powerhouse of India for decades, and several Keralite athletes have attained world-class status, including P. T. Usha, Suresh Babu, Shiny Wilson, K. M. Beenamol, M. D. Valsamma and Anju Bobby George.
As in the rest of India, cricket is the most popular sport in the state but it has an illustrious history in other sports/games, including football. Some notable football stars from Kerala include I. M. Vijayan, V. P. Sathyan, and Joe Paul Ancheri. Volleyball, another popular sport, is often played on makeshift courts on sandy beaches along the coast. Jimmy George, born in Peravoor, Kannur, was a notable Indian volleyball player, regarded in his prime as among the world's ten best players.
It is from the 1990s that cricket started growing in popularity. The 21st century saw two Kerala Ranji Trophy players gain test selection. Shanthakumaran Sreesanth, born in Kothamangalam, has represented India since 2005, and is the most successful cricketer from Kerala. Among less successful Keralite cricketers is Tinu Yohannan, son of Olympic long jumper T. C. Yohannan.

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