The game of Kabaddi has witnessed an enormous revolution in the past couple of years since the arrival of Pro Kabaddi League. This franchise based tournament has made Indian crowd to sit in front of their TV sets and enjoy the national game of India, Kabaddi.
Patna captain Pardeep Narwal, who also is the best raider this season
The jam packed action, raiding moves, thigh five and Le Panga has surely taken a place in Indian hearts, so is the real game of Kabaddi. This year has been the 5th season of PKL and this year the organizers have bring some more interesting setup for the final rounds of the tournaments.
The tournament started with 8 teams in 2014, but from this year, it has been expanded to a 12 team league format and then the knock outs. Apart from the previous teams, four more franchises are representing four more states of India.
Bengal’s Maninder Singh has been key for the team
- Patna Pirates, U Mumba, Puneri Paltans, Bengal Warriors, Dabang Delhi, Bengaluru Bulls, Jaipur Pink Panthers, Telugu Titans were the inaugural teams of PKL.
- Haryana Steelers, Gujarat Fortunegiants, UP Yoddhas, Tamil Thalaivas – these four new franchises have joined them from this season.
Bengal Warriors’ Jang Kun Lee escapes UP defense
The Previous Format:
In the past seasons, the top four teams after the league phase advacned for the semi finals. The 1st placed team faced the 4th placed team, while 2nd and 3rd placed teams faced each other. The winners of those two matches met in the Final.
Captains of the 12 teams giving a pose with the trophy
Change of Format:
This season, 12 teams were divided into two zones based on their zonal position in India.
Haryana, Gujarat, Mumbai, Jaipur, Pune and Delhi were placed in Zone A.
Bengal, Patna, UP, Hyderabad (Telugu), Bengaluru and Chennai (Tamil) were in Zone B.
Top three teams of each zone have advanced to the play offs but there is a change in the play off matches structure.
- Based on their position in their own Zone, the teams will have certain advantages in the Play Offs.
- The two top spot holders of each zone will go head to head for the Qualifier 1, the Winners will advance straight to the finals. While the Looser will still have a second bite of the cherry.
- The 2nd placed team of Zone A and 3rd placed team of Zone B will play Eliminator 1, similarly the 2nd placed Zone B side and 3rd placed Zone A team will play the Eliminator 2.
- Winners of the two Eliminators will have a face off on the Eliminator 3.
- The team that will survive the 3rd Eliminator will now have a virtual semi final frontier and will be facing the looser of Qualifier 1, this fixture is termed as Qualifier 2.
- The winner of Qualifier 2 will face the Qualifier 1 winning team in the Final of the Pro Kabaddi League.
Details of the matches will be published later as final standings of Zone A are yet to be determined. In Zone B, Bengal Warriors have sealed the top spot while reigning Champions Patna Pirates are second, Up Yoddhas have also qualified for Play offs as the 3rd team from Zone B.
In Zone A, Haryana Steelers are certain to be 3rd, while the final match of the league between Gujarat Fortunegiants and Puneri Paltans will decide the top two spot holders as both the teams are in contention.
Eliminator 1 and Eliminator 2 – October 23 (Mumbai)
Qualifier 1 and Eliminator 3 – October 24 (Mumbai)
Qualifier 2 – October 26 (Chennai)
Final – October 28 (Chennai)