The Kho-Kho Federation of India is the latest body to enter the professional league setup in India as it launched the Ultimate Kho-Kho league, a franchise based tournament, in New Delhi on Tuesday.
While the KKFI said the exact dates of the tournament were yet to be decided, the 21-day league is expected to be played around October.
Eight teams will participate in the league which will consist of 60 matches in a double round-robin format. Players from different countries including England, South Korea, Iran, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka will be contracted via draft.
Sports minister Rajyavardhan Rathore announced the league via a video chat on Tuesday.
The KKFI were still in talks for the broadcasting rights of the league and are yet to finalise the venues where they will host the tournament.
“We are still trying to lock-in on a few cities. Kho-Kho is popular everywhere and even in the east like Jharkhand, and Chhattisgarh areas. We will surely decide the venues as well [soon],” Tenzing Niyogi, CEO of the league said.
Indian Olympic Association Secretary General and former KKFI president Rajeev Mehta is the chairman of the league.
“When I was the president of KKFI, we had thought about this idea of making it a league in 2017,” Mehta said.
He also added that Olympic Council of Asia has given the sport recognition and it is likely to become a competitive sport in the 2022 Asian Games.
“We are bidding for 2032 Olympics and if we win the bid, the host country can add two-three sports in the roster. We will include Kho-Kho and Kabaddi in the Olympic roster if we win the 2032 Olympics bid,” he added.