MUMBAI: Mashal Sports has announced that the sixth season of the VIVO Pro Kabaddi will begin on 19th October rather than in July, as was the case with season V. The change of schedule is in view of the fact that this year's Asian Games in Jakarta kicks off 18 August running through to 2 September.
Pro Kabaddi VI is planned to go on for a duration of 13 weeks, consistent with the format of season V of the league. Simultaneously, league promoters Mashal Sports also announced that in 2019, Pro Kabaddi will revert to its July to September window. Season VII will commence Friday, 19th July 2019, and will maintain the 13-week format.
Anupam Goswami, League commissioner, Pro Kabaddi, said: “The VIVO Pro Kabaddi Season VI window has been created to keep in mind adequate recovery time for the players post the Asian Games, and adequate preparatory time for VIVO Pro Kabaddi teams to achieve an ideal state of squad readiness for Season VI. The advance window for Season VII will afford forward looking preparation for squad formation and commercial strategy.”
Janardan Singh Gehlot, president, International Kabaddi Federation said, “Mashal has taken India’s sport of kabaddi from strength to strength with VIVO Pro Kabaddi. We welcome the long term approach which will take it to even greater heights.”
In Season V, the league expanded from eight teams to 12 teams and conducted 138 matches over a duration of 13 weeks. Patna Pirates led by Pardeep Narwal beat Gujarat FortuneGiants to clinch the championship title for the third consecutive time.
Season V touched new highs in terms of viewership records. It was viewed by 313 million viewers on the Star Sports Network and Hotstar, with a watch time of 100 billion minutes, with the finals becoming the most viewed non-cricket sporting event on Indian television.