Sports & nature
Football: Before there were any clubs or competition, after the end of the First World War, in 1919 football was played by soldiers, officers and students who studied abroad in the Universities of France, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, England, Romania, Hungary etc. and began to return home to Pristina. One of these students, studying in France, brought the first football in Pristina in 1919. The ball was a present from a French doctor. After the arrival of the first ball in Pristina, it was mostly youngsters who kicked it around, unorganized and with no institutional support. During that time, only friendly matches were played.
The city of Pristina was a small town of 16,000 citizens when in 1922, the first “blue” club named Kosova” was founded. The club consisted mainly of Pristina Garrison soldiers and did not participate in official competition due to not being registered.
The oldest club of Kosovo was not competing in official levels, but was playing friendly matches with other teams, domestic and from the region. In 1926, Bashkimi football club was also founded in Pristina and consisted mainly of craftsmen. With the advantage of strong material consolidation in comparison to KF Kosova, Bashkimi was registered in the Sub league of football in Banovina, Skopje. In 1945, Bashkimi won the championship title in Kosovo, a success which they also repeated a year after. After World War II, KF Bashkimi and KF Kosova continued to be active in the football field and they were joined by other clubs, such as Milicioneri, Bratsvo and Radniçki.
In 1947, KF Bashkimi and KF Kosova merged into one club by the name of Proleter. This change uplifted the team, and their biggest success was being placed in the quarterfinals of State Championship in Yugoslavia, where they lost 2:0 to Partizan.
Proleter changed its name to Jedinstvo in the 1948/1949. Jedinstvo which was strong in both economic and organizational aspect merged with Bratsvo from Pristina and Zheleznicari from Fushe Kosove.
The new team named Kosova became leader in state championship by winning in two consecutive seasons during 1951/52 and 1953/54. Since 1960 the club has won 19 championship titles, including the last season of 2012/2013. During this period, KF Prishtina has become the only Kosovar football club to win the Kosovar Superliga and Kosovar Cup trophies in one season (2012/13). Their fan club is called Plisat. Some of the most notable players of this club who found their success in international clubs later on include Debatik Curri, Fadil Vokrri, Armend Dallku, Ardian Kozniku, Kushtrim Shala, Goran Dorovic, Zoran Batrovic.
Basketball: Sigal Prishtina is the most successful basketball club in Pristina and in Kosovo and is now part of the Balkan League, their first non-local competition.
Joining it in the Superleague is another team from Pristina, RTV 21. Sigal Prishtina has dominated national basketball since 2002 by being crowned champions of the national Superleague 8 times (2001/02, 2002/03, 2005/06, 2006/07, 2007/08, 2008/09, 2009/10, 2010/11), champions of Kosovo National Cup 10 times (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005,2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013) and one time champion of the Supercup of Kosovo in 2005.
Apart from indoor basketball success, CheBar streetball team from Pristina has been crowned champion of the Streetball Kosovo national championship in 2013. This victory coincided with Streetball Kosovo's acceptance in the FIBA.
Handball: Handball activities in Pristina date back as far as 1948 where we see the emerging of the first teams such as Kosova e Prishtinës, along with Trepca e Mitrovicës, Partizani and Milicionari.
Xhavit Spahiu formed the first club of handball, Normalisti i Prishtinës. The team established themselves as the first champion team of the country. From 1954 to 1959 they triumphed by becoming champions six times in a row.
From 1981 and on because of the political situation in Kosovo, handball was in a difficult position and only recovered in 1999. They were accepted in the International Handball Federation (IHF) and European Handball Federation (EHF). The national team held matches in Bosnia, Turkey, Bulgaria and other Balkan nations.
In 28 November 2001 Pristina hosted a match against Kelecolu, a Turkish team and this marked the beginning of continual friendly matches of Kosovo against other nations not only in the Balkans but as far as Great Britain, Scotland, Egypt etc.
KH Prishtina (Handball club of Pristina) with their main playing stadium in the Palace of Youth and Sport have won the Kosovo’s cup in April 2013 against Vushtrri, establishing themselves as the champions of Kosovo for the fourth time.
KHF Prishtina (Handball club of females in Pristina) has won ten championships in a row and are currently holding their fall championship title for 2012/13. Because of their continual successes at home, they have been qualified for the European league for the second time in their history.
Volleyball: Volleyball in Pristina was first played in the gyms of high schools during 1936.
In 1948, Pristina was the host city of the first volleyball championship, which was organized as a competition between 6 teams.
Ten years later, another championship was organized and the winners, the men's team of Pristina, qualified to play in the League of Serbia and the Second Federative League in Yugoslavia. The women's team, called the University of Prishtina, only made it that far after 1975. In 1991, volleyball in Pristina was no longer organized within the Yugoslavian regulations.
The men's team competed in the first tournament organized independently that year, whereas the women's team competed two years later in the first tournament organized as part of the women's league.
Pristina's volleyball teams, although with changes in names and chairspersons, have competed consistently in championships organised since the sport began its independent activity in 1991 Pristina women's volleyball club are current defending champions in the 2013/2014 season.
Another women's club from Pristina, University AAB won the Cup of Kosovo 2012 by beating Pristina in the final. Despite being the current best team in the women's Superleague, Pristina's team is going through financial obstacles, causing problems in organizing matches in their homecourt.
Pristina's Volleyball Club was elected the most successful club in the women's category for the 2012/2013 season Volleyball in Pristina continues to struggle along with the Volleyball Federation of Kosovo, considering that they are not accepted in the International Volleyball Federation and as a result, Pristina and other clubs cannot compete in international tournaments.
Table: tennis is another active sport in Pristina, since the acceptance of the Kosovar Table Tennis Federation in the ITTF in 2003.
Tennis in Pristina is represented by two tennis clubs, KT Prishtina and KT DielliX. They both practice their activity in the tennis courts located near the Ismail Qemali secondary school KT Prishtina was founded in 1992 and is the first tennis club in Kosovo.
Apart from local tennis players, there are circa 30 international players who play under this club. 22 local male tennis players compete in national tournaments, five of whom are in the top ten. In the women's category, there are four active players. KT DielliX was founded in 1997 and is the main organizer of the traditional tennis tournament in Pristina, Dielli Open.
Karate: in Pristina is played in 14 clubs, of which KK Ippon was champion of the National Championship of Karate in 2013. KK Ardhmëria, KK ASLU, KK Bardhoshi, KK Batllava, KK Fan, KK Iliria, KK Kosova, KK Kosovari, KK Përparimi, KK Prishtina, KK Sharri, KK UNSU and KK Vajzat e Dardanisë also represent Prishtina in national championships and other competitions.
Swimming: There are four swimming clubs in Pristina, KN Step, KN Scan Color, KN Prishtina, KN Nemo OP, and all four of them have been awarded year ending prizes by the Kosovo Swimming Federation in 2013.
Shooting: as a sport began in 1948 in Pristina. Nowadays it is practiced by four clubs: Dardania, Hajvalia, Polici and Zenel Hajdini, and all four of them operate in the Youth Palace of Prishtina.