After its inception in the year 2014, the Pro Kabaddi League has grown into the biggest kabaddi league in the World within no time. With the exponential growth in viewership and popularity in Fantasy Sports (majorly through Dream11), Pro Kabaddi League now counts for the most-watched Indian Sports League outside of IPL. PKL also ranks top in reach vs impressions chart among the non-cricket sports content in India, proving the immense potential of Kabaddi as a youth-oriented Sport. Kabaddi, finds its roots in the Indian history, Kabaddi.
As a sport, Kabaddi has certainly been rekindled with the introduction of the PKL. The institutionalisation of PKL literally altered the fundamentality of Kabaddi in India from a village sport to unbridled action for a global audience. Popular names from various fields such as cinema, politics have played a huge role in the Pro Kabaddi League’s growth.
The Kolkata-based franchise has been there since the inaugural season but is still to win a title. Although the current team does not feature any member from the inaugural season.
Bengal has retained two elite players for the seventh season of PKL. Team’s best raider in the sixth season, Maninder Singh is one of them along with right corner defender Baldev Singh.
They are the defending champions and also among the favourites going into this season. Bengaluru Bulls defeated the Gujarat Fortune Giants in the finals last season to win their first PKL title. In 2015 edition, they finished runners up after losing to U Mumba in the finals.
The Bulls decided to retain three elite players in the form of Rohit Kumar, Pawan Kumar Sehrawat, and Ashish Kumar. They also retained two young players, Amit Sheoran and Sumit Singh. In the auction, the Bulls spent ₹80 lakh for Mahender Singh, the team’s most expensive buy of 2019.
Owned by Radha Kapoor, the Delhi Franchise reached the playoffs of the competition for the first time previous season.
Dabang Delhi decided to change most of their team, retaining just two elite players – Meraj Sheykh and Joginder Narwal. Delhi bought Chandran Ranjit for ₹70 lakh, making the raider team’s most expensive buy of the 2019 auction.
Gujarat Fortune Giants made it to back-to-back finals in its first 2 seasons in the league. But they ran out of luck, as they ended runners up in both outings.
Gujarat retained their last season’s best raider Sachin and defender Sunil Kumar for the seventh season. Along with these two elite players, The Giants also retained two young players – Lalit Chaudhary and Rohit Gulia.
Jaipur Pink Panthers
The Abhishek Bachchan owned, Pink Panthers never lived up to the expectation after winning the inaugural season of the league. Pink Panthers would be hoping to make a solid run in the upcoming season.
Jaipur has retained their best players from the last season Deepak Niwas Hooda and Sandeep Kumar Dhull. They have also retained young superstars Ajinkya Pawar and Lokesh Kaushik. In the auction, Amit Hooda was Jaipur’s most expensive buy for ₹53 lakh.
Led by the most promising young star in Indian Kabaddi, Pardeep Narwal, Patna Pirates is the only team in the history of PKL to achieve a 3-peat, winning 3 consecutive titles. This makes them the most successful franchise in the league.
The Pirates retained Pardeep Narwal, Vikas Jaglan, and Jawahar Dagar for the seventh season. Surender Nada was Patna’s most expensive player at ₹ 77 lakh.
After having finished at the bottom in their first 2 seasons, Puneri Paltan has a lot to prove in the upcoming season.
The only team to not retain any of the players from the previous squad. Although, they did get a few of the players back in the auction. Nitin Tomar was Pune’s most expensive buy, with the raider going for ₹ 1.2 crores.
Coached by Jasveer Singh and Arjun Singh, the greater Noida based franchise have been a consistent performer in their first 2 seasons since 2017.
Up retained their two elite players Amit Narwal and Sachin Kumar. Raider Monu Goyat was UP’s most expensive buy in the 2019 auction for ₹93 lakh. The team used the Final Bid Match (FBM) card to buy back Shrikant Jadhav for ₹68 lakh.
|3||Dabang Delhi K.C.||22||15||4||3||85|
|6||Jaipur Pink Panthers||22||9||11||2||58|