Pro Kabaddi’s seventh season will begin in Hyderabad on July 20 with hosts Telugu Titans facing former champions U Mumba in the opening encounter. The game will be followed by defending champions Bengaluru Bulls’ clash with Patna Pirates.

The format of the expanded 12-team league will change for the upcoming season. Teams will not be divided into two zones as was the case in the previous two campaigns. Instead, there will be one single pool where a double round-robin format will be followed. Every team will face each other twice and the top six will qualify for the playoffs at the end of the league stage.

The top two teams will directly qualify for the semi-finals, while the remaining four teams will battle it out for the other two slots through two eliminators.

Unlike last season, Telugu Titans, Bengaluru Bulls and Jaipur Pink Panthers who had to play their home legs away from their home cities will return to Hyderabad, Bengaluru, and Jaipur respectively.

The season will also see former stars in a coaching role. Anup Kumar has taken charge of Puneri Paltan while Rakesh Kumar is the Haryana Steelers boss.

The final of the seventh edition of Pro Kabaddi will take place on October 19. The venue of the final is still unknown.