The new season will begin on October 22.
The Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) has become one of the most popular and enjoyable leagues in India over the years. The PKL was a revolutionary step for kabaddi in India and around the world. Although the country has always been dominant in world kabaddi, the league increased the benchmark to a different high.
After an amazingly successful eight seasons of the PKL, the league has reached a different level ahead of Season 9. When PKL began in 2014, each team had a purse of ₹60 lakhs and the most expensive player was Rakesh Kumar bought for ₹12.8 lakhs by Patna Pirates. And now, in 2022 when the PKL is heading into its ninth season, the most expensive player is worth ₹2.26 crores. Yes, you read it right, Pawan Kumar Sehrawat got the highest bid by Tamil Thalaivas for ₹2.26 crores, making him the costliest player in the history of PKL.
Season 9 auction witnessed major homecomings for players
Just like every auction, players are released into the pool and are bought by different teams. In Season 9, many players were released and bought back. An auction is the first step to winning a tournament. The teams try their best by using analysts and coaches to attain the best combination. In the Season 9 auction that took place on the 5th and 6th of August witnessed some major homecomings for the players. Let’s have a look at five such players who got back with their former franchise in Season 9.
5. Nitin Tomar (UP Yoddha)
The experienced raider bought in for ₹20 lakhs by UP Yoddha once again after getting released in Season 6. Tomar plays as a left raider. He has played 101 matches and has been a successful raider with 587 raid points.
He has also won 57 tackle points in his PKL career. In the sixth to eighth season, Tomar was in the Puneri Paltan camp. Yoddha got hold of Tomar cheaply this time around, but he can be lethal for the opponents in the upcoming season and is definitely a player to keep an eye on.
4. Girish Maruti Ernak (Bengal Warriors)
Girish is a tough defender who has been a difficult one to dodge for any raider. He plays in the left corner. Bengal Warriors bought the ace Girish for a price of ₹20 lakhs in the ninth season of PKL. He was released in the fifth season and bought by Puneri Paltan for ₹33.5 lakhs. Later, he also played for Gujarat Giants in the eighth season before coming back to Bengal Warriors.
Girish has played 132 matches and has been very crucial for his team in defending. The top-class defender had engaged in a total of 587 tackles and has managed to clinch 286 tackle points. He also has 13 raid points under his belt. He is once again in the Bengal Warriors camp and is expected to bring maximum tackle points.
3. Shrikant Jadhav (Bengal Warriors)
Shrikant Jadhav plays as a left raider in PKL. Bengal Warriors bought him for ₹26 lakhs in Season 9. Jadhav was released by Bengal Warriors in Season 5 and went to U Mumba. He then played three seasons for UP Yoddha before coming back to Bengal Warriors.
Jadhav will be an experienced prospect for the Warriors this time around. He has got 120 matches under his belt with 621 raid points and 26 tackle points. The Warriors bought their old gun back with a lot more experience and will expect him to perform at his best in the upcoming season.
2. Chandran Ranjit (Gujarat Giants)
Chandran Ranjit is back to his old franchise Gujarat Giants for a sum of ₹30 lakhs in the ninth season of PKL. He is a left raider with 100 matches to his name. Gujarat released Ranjit in the sixth season and he was bought by Dabang Delhi for ₹61.25 lakhs, where he played two seasons and was sold to Bengaluru Bulls in the eighth season.
In his 100 matches, he has scored 473 raid points and 30 tackle points. While being in different teams, Ranjit has shown tremendous skills and potential to score points. His new team will expect exactly the same from Ranjit and need him to win them matches.
1. Surinder Singh (U Mumba)
U Mumba bought their right cover defender back for a sum of 35.5 ₹lakhs in Season 9. Surinder Singh, part of U Mumba till Season 7 and bought by Telugu Titans with a big amount of ₹55 lakhs in Season 8. Singh didn’t have to wait long for his homecoming and got back with U Mumba just in a gap of one season.
He has been a wall for both teams. He began his journey with a price of ₹6.6 lakhs with U Mumba and currently priced at ₹35.5 lakhs for the same team. Singh has 216 tackle points to his name and six raid points in his 97-match-long career. U Mumba will be expecting him to show his experience and contribute to making them the champions once again after 2015.