The Senior National Kabaddi Championships 2017 are all set to kick off in Hyderabad on Sunday, featuring the best kabaddi talent the country has to offer. The Gachibowli Stadium will witness six exciting days of high-quality action, with the biggest Pro Kabaddi stars competing against each other and representing their respective states or public sector employers, instead of the usual franchises.
Earlier, the AKFI had stated that a total of 31 teams will take part at the Nationals. However, it has now been ascertained that the men's section will feature a total of 30 teams, while the women's section will have 28 teams in all.
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The draw for both sections was conducted by officials earlier on Saturday, with the sides divided into eight groups. The league phase will be conducted from December 31 to January 2, with the top two teams from each group qualifying for the knockout stage.
Here are the respective pools:
Pool A - Vidarbha, Karnataka, Services Sports Control Board
Pool B - Kerala, Odisha, Haryana, Assam
Pool C - Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Pondicherry
Pool D - West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Railways, Chhattisgarh
Pool E - Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Tripura
Pool F - Delhi, Jharkhand, Rajasthan
Pool G - Uttar Pradesh, BSNL, Himachal Pradesh, Manipur
Pool H - Telangana, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Chandigarh
Pool A - Tamil Nadu, Manipur, Railways
Pool B - Pondicherry, Chhattisgarh, Haryana
Pool C - Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh
Pool D - Odisha, Uttarakhand, Gujarat, Maharashtra
Pool E - West Bengal, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Assam
Pool F - Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Jharkhand
Pool G - Karnataka, Vidarbha, Chandigarh, Tripura
Pool H - Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi
The knockout stages will commence on January 3, with the group winners facing off against second-placed teams from another pool in the Round of 16.