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Out witted UP Yodha take on Dabang Delhi.
Dabang Delhi will win.
Tournament: Pro Kabaddi (PKL) | Venue: The Sheraton Grand Bengaluru Whitefield Hotel & Convention Centre, Bengaluru.Bet Now
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Dabang Delhi has got back their biggest weapon in their arsenal- Naveen Express, while the UP Yodha are grappling with a sudden dip in form. The UP Yodha lost to Gujarat Fortune Giants in their last game by 7 points. Their bumpy ride continues to haunt them as they are breaking down at crucial moments. They are placed 5th in the points table with 2 more games at their disposal. Gujarat Fortune Giants, U Mumba and Puner Paltan are breathing fire down their neck for a spot in the top 6. Dabang Delhi has lost a bit of sharpness though Naveen Express compensates for most of it. They lost to the Jaipur Pink Panthers and then tied games with Bengaluru Bulls and Bengal Warriors before winning the next against Tamil Thalaiva, that too by just 1 point. Hence this will be a contest between 2 teams struggling to win, though the struggle for Delhi is a bit lesser as compared to UP Yodha. UP Yodha has lost a bit of sharpness in their defence and that hurts them in this last lap. They will be up against Naveen Express and if they don’t regulate him, this could be the final lap for the Yodha.
Dabang Delhi is chasing an unfulfilled dream. They are on the cusp of qualifying to the play off. But after a long and arduous journey this season, their vehicle is breaking down as they approach the finish line. Naveen Express is back in action but fatigue is clearly showing on their defence. They have won just 2 of their last 5 games while they were forced to TIE 2 of their games. Their last match was against the Thalaiva which they won laboriously by 1 point. They have 3 more games to get their act together else they will lose their sharpness in the knock out games.
In the absence of Naveen, all-rounder Vijay has given yeoman’s service to Dabang. He along with “Hulk” Sandeep Narwal carried on with the raiding duties effectively. Now with Naveen back in the scheme of things, both these players and contribute in assists and tackles.
Dabang’s have earned 408 raid points in 19 games while conceding 631 points. They have inflicted 20 all-outs but have conceded 24 which is concerning. Their defence is impressive with the likes of Jeeva, Manjit, Joginder and Sandeep Narwal with the garnishing of Krishnan Dhull. They will need to just follow the basics and not take unnecessary risks.
In the last couple of games, Naveen has been able to score Super 10’s but not those big ones that he was looting at the beginning for the season. Also the support raiders like Vijay and Neeraj Narwal have not been able to score heavily. This has resulted in a low yield for Dabang which forces them to play safe or work overtime to win games.
They are up against UP Yodha who are not in the best of form. Dabang will look to win this match with a big margin.
Currently placed 5th in the points table, the UP Yodha are in a precarious situation at this stage of the tournament. They started off slowly only to gain momentum mid tournament. But they seem to be suffering from a mid-life crisis as they have lost their way completely in the last few games. Though they won 3 consecutive games last week, they were beaten yesterday by the Fortune Giants by 7 points. They have 2 more games left to make sure that they remain in contention for the next stage.
Pardeep Narwal has settled in the role of a side-kick to raider Surender Gill who has bulldozed the opposition into submission. But he was isolated by the fortune Giants which did not allow the Yodha to blossom. The UP Yodha will hope that this will be just a temporary blip for Surender Gill. He has earned 170 raid points from 19 games. His specialty is to drag 2-3 defenders and cross the mid-line with ease. Hence he has been able to execute Super Raids consistently.
UP Yodha looked unbeatable during mid-season as they beat the best teams to move in the top 5. But the long season has taken a toll on some players which makes them vulnerable in the final lap. Teams like U Mumba, Fortune Giants and Puneri Paltan are looking for an opportunity to enter the next stage at the expense of the Yodha.
Though defender Nitesh Kumar and Sumit were high effective initially, they seem to have fatigued and lost their sharpness. The Yodha has conceded 19 all-outs and they are always fighting to avoid all-outs due to lesser players on the mat. The only way to resurrect is to reboot their defense and hunt in a pack.
Welcome to the face-off between Naveen Express and Surender Gill. Playing 2 games in 2 days will not be easy on the Yodha’s. They have faltered more often in the last few games and they cannot afford any further breakdowns in the remaining games. It is beyond understanding that they have not been able to dominate even when they have one of the best raiding trio of Surender Gill, Pardeep Narwal and Shrikant Jadhav. The Dabang’s are relieved to have Naveen Express back on track. He looked like his old self against the Bulls and Tamil Thalaiva. They will look to exploit the scratchy defense of the Yodha by letting Naveen creating a stampede. The Dabang’s can falter only if their supporting raiders do not earn enough to support Naveen Express. Both teams are running out of steam as they have to make a dash to the next stage after a long and hectic season. This looks unlikely as the UP Yodha look fatigued and slow in their reflexes.
Dabang Delhi will win.
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