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Rejuvenated Mumba takes on inconsistent Paltan.
Puneri Paltan will win.
Tournament: Pro Kabaddi (PKL) | Venue: Shree Kanteerava Indoor Stadium, BengaluruBet Now
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The western derby has been the highlight of all seasons of the PKL. Both teams have been maverick, dangerous, and inconsistent. Puneri Paltan were clueless against the Gujarat Fortune Giants as they lost by a margin of 10 points even though their star raider Aslam Inamdar scored 19 points. This is a serious lapse in defense for the Paltan.
On the other hand, U Mumba started tentatively against the Tamil Thalaiva in their last game. They were trailing by the end of the first half but rocketed to a 7-point victory by the end of the game. This was due to the miraculous raiding by Ghuman, Ashish, and Jai Bhagwan as they earned 32 raid points collectively. U Mumba can decimate the Puneri Paltan similarly in their next game.
Puneri Paltan got back the Iranian flavor in the form of Fazel Attrachali and Nabibaksh but it turned out to be a sour experience for the Paltan in their last game.
Puneri Paltan fans have always enjoyed their rivalry against U Mumba and the western derby has always produced some unexpected results. The Paltan is yet to win a game this season which is quite surprising. They have a fantastic group of players but their defense seems to be brittle as usual. The Paltan was shocked by the aggressive style displayed by the Gujarat Fortune Giants in their last game. The defense could not come to terms with this even though Aslam Inamdar raided with courage and tenacity earning 19 raid points.
Fazel Attrachali and Nabibaksh will take some time to settle down as they will be expected to shoulder the responsibility of strengthening the Paltan defense. The Paltan has a very low success rate in the tackle as they have conducted just 23 successful tackles in 3 games. This is below par for the Puneri Paltan.
Though they have shared the top position with Dabang Delhi in terms of the team raid points, they have conceded the highest team points this season. They have also conceded the highest all-outs which is quite embarrassing.
Raiders Aslam Inamdar and Mohit Goyat have been impressive but the defense has let them down. Balasaheb Jadhav, Alankar Patil, and Sanket Sawant have been erratic while replacement left corner Gaurav Khatri has performed better whenever he has got the chance. But with Fazel Attrachali in the squad, Puneri Paltan will hope for a revival. He will be up against his former teammates and the Sultan will have to adjust to the new environment very quickly.
U Mumba has always fancied their chances against the Puneri Paltan. Their encounters are full of fireworks and entertainment. Mumba has started showing some consistency as they have won 2 out of their 3 games. They have got back their mojo as young raiders Ghuman Singh, Ashish, and Jai Bhagwan are performed beyond expectations. U Mumba has conducted 45 successful raids while their defenders have inflicted 30 successful tackles. This helps Mumba improve its earnings throughout the match.
They were trailing by the end of the first half in their last game against the Thalaiva but scored 15 raid points in the second half and got the Thailava all out twice. This sudden burst from Mumba has shocked most of their opponents. U Mumba will have to repeat the same against their arc-rivals Puneri Paltan.
Captain Surender Singh and Harender need to improve their consistency while right corner Rinku has been effective at times. Unfortunately, U Mumba does not have much variety in their squad for the defenders and this can be a cause of concern for them.
Mumba has an impressive track record against the Paltan as they have won 9 out of their 18 games while they settled for a TIE twice before. Both teams are equally matched and they know each other very well. Fazel Attrachali will be up against his former teammates and this will be equally entertaining. Fazel knows the way Mumba plays but this is a new season where the youngsters may just surprise the veterans.
The western derby promises to be an exciting contest as both teams have young and talented raiders and both teams have a brittle defense. Puneri Paltan has lost its way after a good start. Raiders Aslam Inamdar and Mohit Goyat are in top form but Nabibaksh will need to be quick and agile in his raids. Left corner Fazel Attrachali will get all his experience to forge a lethal defense for the Paltan.
Captain Surender Singh will be the key for Mumba as his blocks have been very dangerous. Rinku Singh and Harender will combine well to trap Aslam and Mohit. Mumba defense has been saved as their raiders have earned enough in most of the games. Both teams have weak corners which allow raiders from both sides to earn at will. This will be another high-scoring game. Puneri Paltan may just topple U Mumba in this western derby.
Puneri Paltan will win.
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