The world's dirtiest game is now being played in Beijing. At the Olympic Park, next to the Bird's Nest and Water Cube, the first ever swamp soccer tournament to be held in China is currently underway. The competition kicked off on August 9th and will end with the championship match on August 20th. During the tournament 32 teams will compete for a chance to represent China in the 2012 Swamp Soccer World Cup, which will be held in the U.K. The games are being held every day and begin around 3pm and last until 8pm.
Swamp Soccer originated in Finland in the late 1990's and has since been embraced by many countries such as the U.K., Russia, Iceland, Ireland, Switzerland, and even Brazil.
Each team consists six players, and there has to be at least one woman from each team on the muddy pitch throughout the course of the game. The playing field is 25m long and 15m wide. There is no off-side rule or penalty line, and each team can have an unlimited number of substitutes. Each game is thirty minutes in length consisting of two twelve-minute periods separated by a six-minute half-time break.
Swamp soccer just might be the fastest growing sport in the world. It gets bigger each and every year, and its presence in China is a testament to its momentum. Regardless of whether you like the new sport or not, one thing is certain, it's quite entertaining to watch grown men and women playing in the mud.
The Mudslingers pose for a team photo before playing in the mud at Olympic Park. [Photo: CRIENGLISH.com]