The Pro Kabaddi League is hugely responsible for the revived interest and excitement in people for the game of Kabaddi. Over the five seasons, the PKL has seen an ever-increasing viewership on TV and continues to attract fans from the vast reaches of the nation.
However, a sizeable portion of the viewers are not acquainted with some of the modern rules that are unique to the Pro Kabaddi League or even the new fans of the sport who wish to get into the game of kabaddi have questions that often arise. With the 2018 Pro Kabaddi League on the way, some of those questions are hoped to be answered below, as we discuss the rules of the Pro Kabaddi League.
Kabaddi is played between two teams of seven members each who play on opposite sides of the kabaddi court. The objective of the game is to score the most points; and the team to do so wins. The game can be divided into two aspects - attacking and defending.
Points can be scored both during attacking and defending. Attacking involves a ‘raider’ entering into the opponent’s side to tag as many defenders as he can and return back safely to his own side without getting pinned to the ground. Every tagged defender earns the attacking team a point plus the tagged player is ruled out of play temporarily.
Similarly, defending involves preventing the opposing raider to tag members of the team and to stop him from getting back to his own half by wrestling him to the ground. Successfully tackling the raiders earns the defending team a point plus a tagged defender can be brought back into play.
Each kabaddi game has total duration of 40 minutes, divided into two halves of 20 minutes each.
Rules while Raiding
-A raid is only valid, if the raider crosses the baulk line with at least one foot while the other foot is in the air.
-Before entering the opposing court, the raider must keep uttering “kabaddi” and can only stop once he returns back to his court. If he pauses momentarily, the raider is to get back to his own court without scoring any points.
-The raider cannot be grabbed by anything other than his limbs and torso, and it is closely inspected by the officials.
-Players cannot step out of the court, and doing so results in the loss of a point. Also, there is specific zone called the lobby which is active only when the raider has made contact with a defender.
-Empty raids are the ones in which the raider returns to his court without earning any points. After two successive empty raids, the attacking team have to make a “do-or-die” raid, where if they fail to score a point, the defending team earns a point.
-During the knockout matches or semifinals or finals, each team will be awarded one unsuccessful referral in order to challenge tags/touches. Based on televised replays, the final umpire decision will be made.
-Each team is entitled to one In-Play coach consultation in each half. The maximum duration of the consultation is 20 seconds or till the raid is finished, whichever finishes first.
Green Sleeve: Top raider based on points earned per match
Saffron Sleeve: Top defender based on points earned per match
Rules for Extra Points
-Bonus Line: The bonus line is only active when the defending team has at least 6-7 players. If the raider manages to cross the bonus line in a raid, he will earn an extra point.
-All Out: If all the players of a team are tagged out, then the opposing team earns two extra points.
-Super Tackle or Catch: If the defending team, manages to get hold of the raider with less than four defenders, then it is called a super tackle and the defending team earns an extra point.