Pro Kabaddi denies talks with SLKF about PKL 8 in Sri Lanka
A few hours after a media outlet in Sri Lanka claimed that Sri Lanka may host the next season of Pro Kabaddi, the organizers of the league in India have denied such claims. In a statement by the Pro Kabaddi League, a spokesperson has said that there have been no talks between the league and the Sri Lanka Kabaddi Federation about holding the next season of the tournament in Sri Lanka.
The second biggest sports league in India, Pro Kabaddi, takes place every year in the July to October window. However, with the country hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been uncertainty over the league's staging. Pro Kabaddi Season 7 was held from 20th July to 19th October 2019 and was won by the Bengal Warriors.
In a report published in Sri Lankan news agency Ceylon Today, it was reported that Sri Lanka’s Kabaddi President Anura Pathirana had spoken to Pro Kabaddi about hosting the PKL in the country. The publication had quoted Pathirana saying, "We discussed with the relevant authorities regarding the possibility of hosting the event in Sri Lanka, and they have expressed their interest at the idea. So, Sri Lanka has a good chance of hosting this prestigious Indian Pro Kabaddi League in October-November."
However, the rumors were denied by Pro Kabaddi organizers Mashal Sports after a discussion with Pathirana. The SLKF clarified to the management of PKL that his statements regarding the matter have been misrepresented and were incorrect.
A statement made by Pro Kabaddi's spokesperson has stated that there have been no talks with SLKF about hosting the tournament in Sri Lanka. The spokesman said, "The usual window for a season of the Pro Kabaddi League is between July and October. This year, in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic we continue to review the situation and best options for a safe and secure opportunity for the sport, fans, players, and other stakeholders. The health and safety of our players and other participants is paramount and a key consideration in our decision, along with complete compliance with official policy and guidelines. We are also not in discussions with the Sri Lanka Kabaddi Federation to hold Season VIII in Sri Lanka. Anything that we finalize will be done only after the due consultation with the authorities, AKFI, PKL Teams, and other relevant stakeholders."