Pickleball World Series May Finally Make Competitive Pickleball Global

Pickleball World Series is a new slate of events promising to unite competitive and casual players alike from around the globe.

Pickleball World Series May Finally Make Competitive Pickleball Global

India’s foremost media mogul wants pickleball to be a worldwide phenomenon – or at least, more of one.

The Times Group, an Indian news and entertainment company, has announced its Pickleball World Series. The series of six events will begin in the United States and travel across different continents.

The Times Group touts this as the “first tournament with global ambitions” (for the record, one could argue that title already belonged to one of a few international competitions like the inaugural APP Atlantic Cup set to premier this year). 

The World Series events aims to “provide action-packed competition along with scintillating entertainment built around the game,” according to a press release. 

Pickleball World Series format

In the first year, the Pickleball World Series will comprise 64 players in the individual format and six teams of four players each, from the US and the rest of the world, including India.

Individuals representing their respective countries will compete in individual Series events. Top players will then split into teams led by owners as opposed to countries. 

Pranav Kohli of Pickleball Asia and new Series CEO, says the format is also based on a complementary points-based rating system called Pickleball World Rankings, a system categorizing amateur and professional players from around the world.

“This year, we will see widespread adoption of Pickleball World Rankings across the globe. We aim to sanction 1000-plus PWR events next year. So there will be plenty of points available in 2025.”

Kohli says once teams form, Pickleball World Series will ensure owners are “diverse and global.”

A global vision

While pickleball was invented in the United States and gained most of its initial popularity there and in Canada, we were curious to know if Kohli felt that it was important to show North Americans that other parts of the world take the sport just as seriously. 

But he had a different take:

“I do not think that we need to show it to anyone. One country has to really take lead and adopt a sport fully for other countries to follow suit and this is what happened to Pickleball during pandemic and post. The sport has faced its own challenges, with opposition…questioning whether the sport has the capability to hold crowds – both in the stadium and on TV.  

“I think we, the pickleball community, are answering these questions from every corner of the world. Pickleball World Series is the embodiment of this spirit of the community. It is the tour and league Pickleball deserves.”

Kohli says the initiative is also about giving power back to the players.

"It seems like they have to sign something to get the most out of their careers in pickleball. We want to create a great product that they can just show up to," he says.

More details about the Series’ initial schedule are expected later this year.

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