Pro Volleyball League final to be held in Chennai

The tournament will feature 18 matches with six teams battling it out in a round-robin format and the top four will progress to the semifinals.

The Pro Volleyball league will witness the participation of some of the top Indian players like Mohan Ukkrapandian, Ranjit Singh, Akhin Jas, Deepesh Sinha, Gurinder Singh and Prabhakaran to name a few.   -  Pro-Volleyball League

The 2019 edition of the Pro Volleyball League will begin on February 2 and will be played in Kochi and Chennai, with the latter hosting the final, league CEO Joy Bhattacharjya told Sportstar.

The tournament will feature 18 matches with six teams battling it out in a round-robin format and the top four will progress to the semifinals.

“We want to get the product right in the first season and hence the matches will be held in two of our strongest markets — Kochi and Chennai,” said Joy.

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The matches will be telecast on the Sony Network through the week from 7-9 p.m. Joy stated that there are very few sports which are television friendly and enjoy widespread popularity in the country, and volleyball is one of them.

“Our belief is that people haven't seen how good volleyball is on TV. You see it only during the Asian Games or the Olympics. Our aim is to show what a fantastic game it is.

"There is a huge amount of interest around the country and the sport is played by a lot of people. We have great expectations not just for the league but for the sport of volleyball.

"What we're trying to do is get big foreign players and the top Indian players to play together, which will make a huge difference to Indian volleyball," he said.

Each team will consist of 12 players, including two foreigners and as many U-21 players. The player auction is scheduled to be held in the first half of December.

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Teams will be allotted a total budget of 75 Lakh each. While the overseas players will be picked through a draft, the Indian players will be split into categories.

The ‘Icon Players’ category, whose base price is set at Rs. 8 lakh, will feature seasoned campaigners like Mohan Ukkrapandian, Jerome Vinith and Akhin Jas.

The others will be split as per their position of play, such as blockers or setters, while the U-21 players will have a category of their own.

The league is set to attract some of the best foreign talents, with the star attraction being USA’s gold-medal winning Olympian David Lee.