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Pro Kabaddi League season 2 to kick off on 18 July in Mumbai

MUMBAI: Pro Kabaddi League, which was a grand success in 2014, will make its much awaited return from 18 July with the opening leg to be held at National Sports Club of India (NSCI) in Mumbai.

The season opener will pit the two finalists of last year, as host team U Mumba take on reigning Champions Jaipur Pink Panthers.

Promoted by Mashal Sports and Star India with the backing of the Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India and International Kabaddi Federation, the league will feature 60 games played across 37 days in eight cities.

Following the same ‘caravan style’ format like in the first season, the league will be played at each franchise city for a duration of four days, where the home team will play four of the visiting franchises. All seven visiting franchises will play a set of away games in each city.

After the opening leg in Mumbai, the league will move on to the Netaji Indoor Stadium, Kolkata, followed by the home of current champions, Jaipur Pink Panthers at Sawai Mangsingh Stadium in Jaipur.

The Indoor Stadium at the Patliputra Sports Complex, Patna will be the venue for the culmination to the first half of PKL season 2.

Hyderabad, the new home of the Telugu Titans, will play host to the second half of the league with the caravan arriving at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium on 4 August.

Moving on from Hyderabad, the league will be played in at Thyagaraj Indoor Stadium in the capital city and move onto the Kanteerava Indooor Stadium in Bangalore before culiminating at the Balewadi Sports Complex in Pune.

For the grand finale, the play offs will return to NSCI Mumbai, with the semi-finals scheduled for 21 August and the finals and play-offs scheduled for Sunday, 23 August.

Star Sports Pro Kabaddi League re-packaged and revamped the ancient Indian sport of Kabaddi, transforming it from its erstwhile hinterland stereotype to an aspirational and popular sport.

In its very first season, the league achieved tremendous support and acceptance amongst sports lovers across the country.

Within 12 hours of its commencement, PKL achieved 140 million impressions on Twitter through 6 million tweets. The historic finale was watched by 1 out of every 4 TV viewers in India and the league was watched by about 435 million viewers on TV (TAM data CS4+ extrapolated to the universe using a standard conversion factor), making Kabaddi one of India’s most followed sports.