Mancala World

Krur → Italian.

Other Names: Crur, Hrur,
Khrour, Krour, Kurùr
First Description: C. Béart,
Cycles: One
Ranks: Two
Sowing: Multiple laps
Region: Mauretania, Mo-
rocco (Western Sahara)

Krur (Crur) is a mancala game, which is played by Hassaniya speaking people in Western Sahara, Morocco and in Mauretania. It is mostly played by children.

The holes called dyar ("houses") are usually dug in the sand.

The game was first described by C. Béart in 1955 (Mauretania), and then again in 1999 by Fernando Pinto Cebrián (Western Sahara). It may be related to Um Laarais.


The board consists of two rows, each one has four holes.

At the start there are four seeds in every hole.


Initial Position

Each player controls the holes on his side of the board.

On his turn a player picks up the contents of one of his holes and then sows them in an anticlockwise direction, one by one, starting in the following hole.

If he drops the last seed in an empty hole, his turn ends.

If the last seed falls in an occupied hole of the opponent, making a total of four seeds, the turn ends by capturing this hole, which is marked.

If the last seed is dropped into an occupied hole, its contents (including the last seed sown) are distributed in another lap.

Seeds are sown into holes that are captured by you but not into those which are captured by the opponent.

A sowing cannot begin from a captured hole.

The game ends, when no seeds remain in play.

The winner of the game is the player who has captured more seeds than his opponent.

Match Rules

Usually not just a game is played, but a match.

In the next game players fill the holes with the captured seeds.

  • The winner fills all his holes with four seeds.
  • The looser fills as many holes he can with four seeds. If some seeds are left over, he puts them in another hole, but always an even number of them, so it is possible that he retains a single seed.
  • The empty holes on the looser's side of the board are refilled with sand or marked in some way. They are not used in the next game.
  • If a player has not enough holes for seeds in the next round, he reopens as many holes as needed.
  • There is no fixed rule about the order to close or reopen the holes. Sometimes they are openend from left to right. However, this is not important to the game.

The winner of the match is the one who captures all the seeds and leaves the opponent with no holes on his side.


Béart, C.
Jeux et Jouets de l'Ouest Africain (Memorias No. 42). IFAN, Dakar (Senegal) 1955: 512-514.
Pinto Cebrián, F.
Juegos saharauis para jugar en la arena. Juegos y juguetes tradicionales del Sáhara. Madrid (Spain) 1999.


© Wikimanqala.
By: Víktor Bautista i Roca.
Under the CC by-sa 2.5.