If there’s another sport that India is now fond of aside from cricket, that’s probably Kabaddi. This intense, high-energy game has captured the hearts of millions nationwide.
Now, when talking about this sport, one particular tournament stands out, and that’s the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL). It’s an annual pro kabaddi tournament that’s been around since 2014, and it’s coming back for its 10th edition this year.
This year’s PKL is shaping up to be more exhilarating than ever. Whether you’re already a fan or someone who’s thinking about diving into the world of Kabaddi, scroll on because we’ll be sharing the details you should know about.
About India’s Pro Kabaddi League
The Pro Kabaddi League came into existence in 2014. It’s pioneered by sports management companies Mashal Sports and Star India.
What started as an ambitious venture has now evolved into a sporting phenomenon, and it now has multiple successful seasons under its belt. It’s also now known as the most-watched tournament in India next to cricket’s Indian Premier League (IPL).
Speaking of the IPL, the PKL is greatly inspired by the latter in terms of format. This is why many have been intrigued whether the tournament will be relevant as not a lot of leagues with the same format have experienced success.
The first edition of the PKL was estimated to have had over 430 million viewers and has earned a revenue of around 43.5 crores. While that has been the all-time high of viewership for this tournament, the numbers remained significant throughout the years.
The 2021-22 edition was reported to have around 312 million viewers according to the Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC).
Without a doubt, the PKL has witnessed the rise of iconic players and teams, contributing to the growth of Kabaddi’s popularity across the nation.
Throughout its successful seasons, the PKL has also seen remarkable players like Pardeep Narwal, Rahul Chaudhari, and Monu Goyat, who have left an indelible mark on the league. Teams like Patna Pirates, Bengaluru Bulls, and U Mumba have become household names, fostering a passionate fanbase.
PKL 2023-24 Teams, Schedules, and Venues
This year’s edition of the PKL is set to run from December 2, 2023, to February 2024. There will be 12 teams participating which are the following:
Jaipur Pink Panthers, Puneri Paltan, Bengaluru Bulls, UP Yoddha, Tamil Thalaivas, Dabang Delhi, Haryana Steelers, Gujarat Giants, U Mumba, Patna Pirates, Bengal Warriors, and Telugu Titans.
The first match of the season on December 2, 2023, will be between Gujarat Giants and Telugu Titans. Match 2 will also be on the same day when U Mamba and UP Yoddhas will be facing each other.
Meanwhile, the defending champions (Jaipur Pink Panthers), will have their first match on Day 3 of the tournament, and they’ll go against Puneri Paltan.
The matches will be held at three different venues this year:
- The Arena by TransStadia in Ahmedabad
- Shree Kanteerava Indoor Stadium in Bengaluru
- Badminton Hall in Balewadi Sports Complex, Pune
- SDAT Multipurpose Indoor Stadium, Chennai
- Noida Indoor Stadium, Noida
- DOME by NSCI, Mumbai
- SMS Indoor Stadium, Jaipur
- Gachibowli Indoor Stadium, Hyderabad
- Patliputra Indoor Stadium, Patna
- Thyagaraj Indoor Stadium, Delhi
- Netaji Indoor Stadium, Kolkata
- Tau Devilal Indoor stadium, Panchkula
Who Will Triumph This Year’s PKL?
Before you place your bets on India’s most popular PKL betting site, let’s go over three of the favorite teams to win the tournament this year. Well, at least three of the favorites so far.
Many are wondering if Jaipur Pink Panthers will be able to keep their champion status this year. If they do, that will be their third trophy for this event. Another team with multiple championships under its belt is the Patna Pirates.
Patna Pirates did not do so well last season, so their fans are hoping they’ll do a better job this year. They did finish 10th last year, but based on their lineup this year, they have star players like Sachin Tanwar, Rakesh Narwal, and Manjeet Dahiya who could help them bag the title.
Dabang Delhi is another team that many are talking about this year. They won the tournament in 2022 and it was their first championship title. This year, many found it interesting that the team released Vijay Malik. However, they still have Naveen Kumar, one of the most successful raiders in the tournament.
Whether you’re a seasoned Kabaddi enthusiast or a newcomer eager to explore the thrill, the PKL promises to deliver thrilling and unforgettable moments. The PKL 2023-24 matches will be telecasted live by Star Sports Network. The matches will also be streamed on Disney+ Hotstar.