PUDUCHERRY:Tourism Minister P Rajavelu inaugurated the annual petanque tournament here on Friday. The sixth edition of the tournament is being held at the Indira Gandhi Sports Complex here.
The Tourism Department is conducting the three-day tournament, in which as many as 212 teams from Puducherry are participating.
One of the organisers said petanque was developed by Jules Lenoir of France in 1907 by improvising lawn bowling, which was popular in England. The game became a craze in France and the first petanque tournament was held in 1910.
The game was introduced in Puducherry by the French. The game centres around throwing with ‘boules’ (metal balls), weighing around 550 gm to 750 gm.
A toss will be held to decide to throw the jack, a small wooden ball. The players then throw the boule by standing inside a small circle and it should land close to the jack. A team has three players with two boules each. For each boule, a team has to get closer to the jack than the best-placed boule of the opposition, it gets one point.
Director of Tourism R Mounissamy said that French architecture, straight roads, French dances highlight the prevalence of French culture in this UT, which was a former colony.