No matter how talented a sports team is, the Indian system won’t give a shit about its existence - unless it’s cricket, of course.

Although a handful of sports like hockey and tennis have attracted some attention, a lot of other national sports still remain neglected irrespective of the performances of their teams.

Here’s a list of 10 such Indian national sports teams which have existed since decades but are no better than ghost teams.

1) Rowing

© Facebook/India Rowing

The team has been consistently participating in various rowing events all over the globe. Blame it on the poor funding and government neglect, the rowing team struggles to garner fans and popularity.

2) Kho Kho

Shocking, right? Well, so were we. Though it’s hard to believe but we do have a national Kho Kho team. And as a matter of fact, they actively participate in international meets.

3) Softball

Surprisingly, the Softball Association is affiliated to International Softball Federation (ISF )and Softball Confederation of Asia (SCA) and recognized by the Indian Olympic Association (IOA). But did you even know that we have a national Softball team?

4) Water Polo

Yes, be surprised; be very very surprised. The national water polo team does exist but sadly it is so unpopular that there’s hardly any information about it on the internet.

It is to be noted that the team had participated in the Olympics in the years 1948 and 1952. The sport is administered by Swimming Federation of India.

5) Ice Hockey

The Ice hockey team made news for the first time ever in April 2015, not because it had won a medal, but because it took to social media to ‘beg’ for funds to help them participate in an Asia-level tournament in Kuwait.

Even then, there was negligible government help and it was only after cricketer Gautam Gambhir donated 4 lakhs that the team was finally able to fly to Kuwait. Despite all odds, the team has made its presence felt on the international ice hockey circuit.

6) Handball

Ironically, Handball Federation of India is a member of the Asian Handball Federation (AHF) and the International Handball Federation (IHF) since 1974, but the team has never ever participated in an international event. The teams are pretty active on the domestic level though.

7) Baseball

Yet again, we do have a baseball team but the information about it is almost nonexistent. What does exist is a website of Amateur Baseball Federation of India which has outdated pictures and vague information.

Thanks to Rinku Singh and Dinesh Patel, the two Indian baseball players who played for Amerca’s NBL’s Pittsburgh Pirates, at least some people are aware about the game’s existence in India.

8) Rugby

Though our Rugby team has been pretty active in small-time international events, extremely poor standard of training, lack of stadiums to practice, and government interference has led to repeated disappointing performances from the players. There have been matches where the team couldn’t even score a single point in the entire game.

9) Basketball

Probably the most well-known of all the sports on this list, our basketball team has often made its presence felt at international events.

10) Bowling

© Facebook/Tenpin Bowling Federation India

Bowling in India is administered by Bangalore-based Tenpin Bowling Federation of India. The team officially represented India at the WTBA World Tenpin Bowling Championships in Bangkok and the Commonwealth Tenpin Bowling Championships in Belfast. But yet again, it’s like a ghost sport.


- Because of extreme scarcity of information about these teams, there might be a slight confusion with the photos. If you know any better, your inputs are welcome.


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