The Pro Wrestling League is an Olympic Wrestling League based in India and the biggest wrestling promotion in the country. The PWL is a joint initiative of ProSportify and the Wrestling Federation of India. The league has shown immense promise over the years, and is touted to become one of the best Olympic Wrestling Leagues in the world. The League boasts of a prize purse of ₹3 crores, with ₹1.9 crore entitled to the champions while the runners-up winning ₹1.1 crore.
The Pro Wrestling League 2019 kickstarted on Monday, 14th January 2019 and will go till the end of the month, concluding on the 31st of January. The PWL Season 4 will witness participants from 15 nationalities spanning across Asia, Europe, Africa and the American continents.
The Pro Wrestling League was established in 2015, and the 2019 edition will be the fourth season of the action-packed competition. Over the course of three years, the Pro Wrestling League has recorded a total of staggering 3,764 points (average of 70 points per match) scored by all the participating wrestlers. The league has showcased some of the biggest talents in wrestling out there and their achievements are listed below:-
- 51 Olympians (23 Men & 28 Women)
- 20 Rio 2016 Olympic Medalists
- 30 World Championship Medalists
- 13 Continental Games Champions
- 34 World and Continental Champions
The league follows the round-robin structure of tournament. However, instead of playing two games against every other team on a home-away basis, a single match takes place between every team. The top teams from the group stages qualify for the playoff spots.
During the group stages, seven out of the nine weight category bouts are held in each draw, as each team is allowed to block one of the weight categories they do not wish to not compete in. Both the teams have to play all of the seven bouts regardless of the results of the preceding bouts.
During the playoffs, bouts are held in each weight category is held and no blocking is allowed in this stage. Whichever team scores five points first, wins the match.
A minimum of 130 bouts are held in the league. The Pro Wrestling League strictly conforms to the rules of the United World Wrestling and the Wrestling Federation of India.
The Pro Wrestling League started out with five original franchises, however with the success of the previous editions in mind, a new, sixth franchise was added to the league from the 2019 edition. The teams are - Delhi Sultans, Haryana Hammers, Mumbai Maharathi, NCR Punjab Royals, UP Dangal and the MP Yodha (sixth team).
In every season of PWL, all wrestlers participate in a bidding system. Players are listed in an auction where each team owner bags a chosen wrestler after making the highest bid. Each team comprises of nine wrestlers, five men and four women. The further stipulation is that the team must comprise of five domestic wrestlers, while the other four can be international wrestlers.
Wrestlers to Watch Out For
A lot of international stars are missing from the 4th season of PWL including the likes of Abdulrashid Sadulaev, Geno Petriashvili, Taha Akgul, Akhmed Chakaev and Olympic and World Champion Vladimir Khinchegashvili. A decrease in the salary cap and a sharp rise in the base price of international stars, has seen them without having a team to play for.
However, a number of domestic stars will be on the show for their respective teams. Keep an eye out for Bajrang Punia (NCR Punjab Royals), Vinesh Phogat (Mumbai Maharathi), Sakshi Malik (Delhi Sultans), Pooja Dhanda (MP Yodha), and Sumit Malik (Delhi Sultans).