THE PRO KABADDI LEAGUE has taken the truly indigenous sport of kabaddi to new levels of professionalism. The league has aided all stakeholders involved in the ecosystem of the game. It has profited the players themselves as they have become the new role models for the youth of India. This bold step highlights the new, modern, international and competitive face of kabaddi throughout the length and breadth of the country, and beyond.
This association for the Inter Zonal Kabaddi Tournament is another step towards involving grassroots and getting as many people to play the action packed game of kabaddi. The two seasons of PKL has seen the sport launch from its perceived notion of being a rural sport which is played in mud, to being perceived as a sport that demands physical fitness and skills. For the first time, a full body contact sport like kabaddi was watched by an urban audience and was studded with glitz and glamour of Bollywood.
In its effort to ensure that Kabaddi is sampled across various levels, Star Sports has extended their support to the Inter-Zonal Kabaddi Tournament to be hosted in New Delhi. The spruced up stadium set up with kabaddi mats etc. which are implemented by Star Sports is expected to inspire young athletes in schools/colleges to take up kabaddi professionally.
Repackaged, the sport has resonated with the urban masses creating an appetite for more kabaddi action throughout the year. Given the enthusiastic response from both viewers and advertisers and with a view to build greater ubiquity and continuity for the sport, Star Sports is also driving grassroots participation for the game.
The PKL, which has seen success in its two ediitons till now, is all set to make its return for a third season from 30th January 2016, just five months after completion of the second season. Hyderabad will host the opening leg of Season 3, with the first match being played between Telugu Titans and U Mumba at the Titan’s home turf, Gachibowli Indoor Stadium.
PKL, organized by Mashal Sports and Star India, in association with the International Kabaddi Federation, Asian Kabaddi Federation and the Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India is now going to be a bi-annual league with two seasons every year.
Dabang Delhi’s Amit Chillar who was present at the event to support the tournament was happy to see the excitement for the sport building up.
“ Star sports has taken a great step towards betterment of Kabaddi, first the PKL and now supporting even the grassroot level matches. These kind of inter zonal tournament is very useful for the young players, even I have reached at this level by playing tournaments like these. This will help us producing more international players.
Padmini Singla, Director - Education & Sports, Govt of NCT, Delhi, said:
“The Delhi Inter-Zonal Kabaddi Tournament is one of the key sporting events in Delhi and the enthusiasm amongst youth is always high for it. The Government is promoting and supporting such sporting events as they are important for their development. We are happy that Star Sports has been forthcoming in their support and for providing facilities such as international standard mats for this zonal-level tournament.”