The Pro Kabaddi League
The Pro Kabaddi League is India's first professional and the only kabaddi tournament, initiated by Marshall Sports. This league has changed the face of the game and put Kabaddi at the forefront in the field of sports. Started last year, the league has already generated a lot of hype and popularity. In its first season itself, it was the huge success. In its inaugural season, it was credited with an all India viewership of around 435 million over its five week run, making it the second most watched sporting event in the country. The first season was won by the Japiur Pink Panthers, owned by Abhishek Bachchan.
The leauge is being played in a “Caravan Style” in which all the 8 teams travel to each venue and face each other twice, in order to play 56 league games, 2 semi-finals, 1 third-fourth position game and a Grand Finale, making it a total of 60 matches over the time period of five weeks. There are certain rules (combination of modern and traditional rules) set by the governing body, which each team and player has to follow. The grand finale will be played on 23rd of August at NSCI stadium, Mumbai.
This year also, eight teams, representing eight regions of India, are invited by Marshall Sports to participate in the league. The eight teams are U Mumba, owned by Ronnie Scewvala, Jaipur Pink Panthers, owned by Abhishek Bachchan, Bengal Warriors, Bengaluru Bulls, Dabang Delhi, Patna Pirates, Telugu Titans and Puneri Paltan. Each team has seven players led by a captain. Some of the key players of this season are Anup Kumar, Sonu Narwal, Deepak Narwal, Omkar Jahav, Amit Singh and many more. The second season of the league has already been kick started on 18th July and the first match was between U Mumba and Jaipur Pink Panthers, in which U Mumba has defeated the Pink Panthers in a very close battle. According to the point tally, U Mumba is at the top with 20 points. With 10 points each, Telugu Titans and Bengaluru Bulls are at the second and third positions respectively. Bengal Warriors with 5 points is at fourth position. Jaipur Pink Panthers and Patna Pirates both have 2 points each and are at fifth and sixth positions respectively, while Puneri Paltan with just 1 point is at seventh position. Dabang Delhi is yet to score a point.
Kabaddi is a high intensity contact sport driven by emotions and desire to win. The Pro Kabaddi League has brought the spirit of the game back to arena. The sport is finally getting the recognition it deserves.