Kerala’s iconic snake boat race has been featured prominently by Wimbledon Tennis Championship as a poster on its digital platforms including official Facebook page of the ongoing mega tennis tourney, reflecting on the success of the state tourism’s sustained global marketing outreach.
The poster depicts an image of prominent Wimbledon players in tennis attire rowing two snake boats in a panoramic backwater setting off a lush coconut grove in Kerala.
The image is accompanied by an emoji of Kerala and London shaking hands and the description “ready for the annual boat race! Who will be lifting the 2023 Wimbledon championship.”
“Really exciting to see Kerala’s snake boat race being featured by Wimbledon as an official poster,” Kerala Tourism Minister P A Mohamed Riyas said.
Wimbledon is yet another major sporting event to feature Kerala, within a few of months after Chelsea FC making a virtual tour of backwater paradise Alappuzha, praising the beauty of the land. Riyas had then invited the ‘Blues’ for a ‘real tour’ of God’s Own Country, where football is loved as much life.
Significantly, Kerala’s snake boat race receives global attention ahead of state’s annual Champion’s Boat League (CBL), held post-monsoon in different locales of the state.
Interestingly, the commencement of Wimbledon championship coincided with the start of the boat race season in Kerala with Champakulam Moolam Vallam Kali held on the Pamba river today.
Snake boat race, powered by village rowers, has been prominently featured by Kerala Tourism in international travel and tourism trade fairs and roadshows.
Snake boat races have for centuries been a water sporting tradition unique to Kerala, where teams of young rowers vie for honours, mostly in central Kerala. The long water craft, shaped like a snake and bearing the imprint of the Kerala’s highly skilled boat-builders, was called ‘snake boat’ by the British. The snake boat races are organised during harvesting season.