The ninth season of the Pro Kabaddi League comes with fresh teams, fresh challenges and a fresh set of additions to the playing conditions. Fans are back to stadiums for the first time after the covid-19 pandemic and the tweaks in the playing rules promise to enrich the viewing experience and allow teams a higher level of tactical support through their clashes.
Here’s a recap of the full set of rules and the format of play and an explainer of what’s changed: If you’re new to the sport and the league, Sportstar explains the terms associated with the game.
1: Lobby rule amended
Under the previous regulations, both the defender who follows the raider into the lobby and the raider who enters the lobby without touching any defenders were deemed to be out.
However, the defender who follows the raider into the lobby before being touched by the raider will no longer be regarded as out under the new regulations, in contrast to previous seasons.
2: Larger squad is allowed for matchday:
A team can have a maximum of 14 players in its match-day squad after the enforcement of the new rule. Previously, 12 player squad was allowed.
3: Permitted substitutions increase
Unlike the five substitution changes during the match and one during half-time, this season, teams can substitute up to a total of eight changes, including one in the strategic time-out.
PKL has a number of technical terms associated with the playing conditions. If you’re confused about what terms like raid, technical point, bonus etc mean, here’s a guide:
If the opposition has six or more players on the mat, the bonus line (the second black colour line in the opponent’s half) becomes active. In such a case, if the foot of the raider lands over the bonus line without cutting it, then the raiding team will receive a bonus (+1) point even if the raider is successfully tackled during the raid. Bonus points will not revive a player.
A technical point is credited to the team and not to any raider or defender, and it is awarded due to the following reasons:
- ⦿ Coaching by a player/coach when a raid is active.
- ⦿ If a player goes out of bounds before being in contact with an opponent during a raid.
If a raider gets three or more points (can be touch or bonus or technical points) for his team from a single raid then that raid is called a Super Raid.
If a team goes on two successive empty raids (raids fetching no points for either team), then the next raid is called a Do-Or-Die Raid. The raiding team must get the point during this raid, or else the raider will be out even if he is not tackled.
If a raider gets ten raid points (touch and bonus points) in a single game, then it is called a Super 10.
If the defending team has three or lesser players on the mat, then with the successful tackle of a raider the team gets two points instead of one.
If a defender gets five tackle points (inclusive of super tackle points) in a single game, then it is called a High Five.
If a player (in most cases an all-rounder) gets both a Super 10 and a High Five in the same game, then the feat is called a Double.
Teams get five points for a win and three points for a draw.
If a team loses by less than a seven-point margin, then it gets one point.
During the league phase, usually teams are allowed one review each in a game. For the knockouts, teams get one review per half (two in total).