PKL 2021 All you need to know - Teams, schedule, venue, rules, streaming details

The Pro Kabaddi League returns for its eighth edition and begins in Bengaluru on December 22, 2021.

PKL 8 will be conducted in a bio-secure bubble at the Sheraton Grand Bengaluru Whitefield Hotel and Convention Centre.   -  Special Arrangement

The Pro Kabaddi League is back for its eighth edition. The 2021-22 season unfolds after a 25-month break due to the coronavirus pandemic. Franchises will fight it out for the ultimate prize - the PKL 8 trophy in a bio-bubble in Bengaluru.

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Here's everything you need to know ahead of the season:

1. When does PKL 8 start?

The eighth edition of the Pro Kabaddi League begins on December 22 in Bengaluru and will go on till February, with the final scheduled for February 26.

2. How many teams participate in the league?

Twelve franchises are in the mix in the Pro Kabaddi League - Bengaluru Bulls, Bengal Warriors, Dabang Delhi, Gujarat Giants, Haryana Steelers, Jaipur Pink Panthers, Patna Pirates, Puneri Paltan, Tamil Thalaivas, Telugu Titans, U Mumba and UP Yoddha.

3. Will fans be allowed to watch matches this season?

No. PKL 8 will be conducted in a bio-secure bubble at the Sheraton Grand Bengaluru Whitefield Hotel and Convention Centre. All 12 teams will be housed in the hotel, have designated time slots for training and meals, and will be allowed to travel only to the competition venue, which is just a few yards from their rooms. This is a concept the NBA successfully executed that the PKL has adapted here.

READ MORE FROM PKL 8: Pro Kabaddi season 8 fixtures: Full schedule and timings

4. Which teams have won the PKL in the past?

The league began in 2014. Here is a look at the winners since then:

2014: Jaipur Pink Panthers

2015: U Mumba

2016: Patna Pirates

2016: Patna Pirates

2017: Patna Pirates

2018: Bengaluru Bulls

2019: Bengal Warriors

5. Which is the most successful team in PKL history?

Patna Pirates is the most successful title in PKL history. The side, inspired by Pardeep Narwal (who has since moved to UP Yoddha) won a hat-trick of title between season three to season five.

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6. Is the League shorter this year?

Yes and no. It is a full season in terms of fixtures, but the PKL this season will feature triple headers for the first time in its history - another NBA-inspired move. The first four match days feature three games each after which every Saturday will be a triple header.

7. Who is the most expensive player in the League this year?

Pardeep Narwal, aka the Dubki King, is the most expensive player in the Pro Kabaddi League's history. The raider was roped in by UP Yoddha for Rs. 1.65 crore at this year's player auctions.

8. Are foreign players participating in the League?

Yes. In fact, international players have been integral parts of franchises and their success over the years. Twenty-four foreign players, two per team, will feature in the league this season.

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9. Who is the best raider in PKL history?

Pardeep Narwal is the most successful player in PKL history, with 1,169 points to his name [1,160 of those having come from raids]. He has topped raiding charts even if his team (Patna Pirates for five seasons) has not pulled through with results and promises to be a vital addition to the UP Yoddha unit in this edition.

10. Who is the best defender in PKL history?

Manjeet Chillar, with 339 points from 108 games, is the best defender in the history of the league. Chillar however faded away a bit in PKL 7 due to the overall fortunes of the Tamil Thalaivas as well. With Ravinder Pahal (Dabang Delhi) and Fazel Atrachali (U Mumba) snapping at Chillar's heels, we may see a chance in the leader board this time around.

READ MORE FROM PKL 8: PKL 2021 auction: UP Yoddha signs Pardeep Narwal for record Rs. 1.65 crore

11. Who is the defending champion?

Bengal Warriors won the 2019 edition of the league, beating Dabang Delhi in the final.

12. Where to watch PKL 8?

You can watch all the games in the Pro Kabaddi League on the Star Sports Network. The matches will also be streamed live on the Disney + Hotstar app.

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