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Clash of Unexpected neighbors in the points table.
UP Yodha will win.
Tournament: Pro Kabaddi (PKL) | Venue: Shree Kanteerava Indoor Stadium, BengaluruBet Now
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It is surprising to see the UP Yodha struggling this season. Normally they would be in the top half of the points table but after playing 5 games they find themselves in the 8th spot. Though this is a long season, the Yodha needs to get its act together.
Tamil Thalaiva were relieved to win their first game of the season so early. They beat the Patna Pirates to earn brownie points. They are still awaiting the return of “Xander Cage” Pawan Sehrawat who has been recovering quickly. This will add another dimension to the Thaliava and they might just zoom up the points table as the season ends.
But as of now UP Yodha look like a superior side to the Thalaiva. Pardeep Narwal and Surender Gill are operating well together while the defense is taken care of by left corner Sumit and Ashu Singh. The issue this season with the Yodha is that the raiders and defenders haven’t resonated well. Hence they earn a lot and concede too much. This will be a good opportunity for the UP Yodha to test their backup players to form a better combination for upcoming tough games.
Mysteries once solved do not terrorize the opponents. Dubki King Pardeep Narwal knows this as he is working towards innovating his style. In most of the games, the opposition defenders have pounced on him together rather than individual tackles. Hence he has been forced to play second fiddle to Surender Gill. Gill is just behind Naveen Kumar this season while Pardeep is once again in the top 10, a place where he belongs.
UP Yodha has won just 2 out of their 5 games while they lost to Dabang Delhi by a margin of 2 points. They have been living on the edge for most of their matches as the defenders have butter fingers the moment their raiders start looting points. In their last game against the Fortune Giants, Pardeep and Surender both scored a Super 10 while the defense earned just 3 points in the entire match out of 45 team points.
This is unacceptable for the Yodha as they had a great chance to beat the Fortune Giants. Left corner Sumit has been exemplary while Ashu Singh and Shubham Kumar’s form is attached to a pendulum. The biggest disappointment for the Yodha is the form of their captain Nitesh Kumar who has been totally toothless this season. They need to find a replacement for him at the earliest as they need to win points in every game to maintain their position in the top 5 at least.
Surprisingly the Tamil Thalaiva has always given a tough fight to the Yodha by winning 2 out of their 8 games played but forcing a TIE in 3 other matches. Hence the Yodha will have to be careful about losing such games. Though Tamil may be without their star Pawan Sehrawat they cannot be taken lightly as the UP defense is brittle and gullible.
Fans of Tamil Thalaiva were supercharged when their team defeated the mighty Patna Pirates in one of the games. Raider Himanshu Singh was the hero of the match with a Super 10 while the defenders trapped every raider who came into their zone. But this happiness was disturbed in the next game as the Thalaiva laid down arms to arch-rivals Bengaluru Bulls in the southern derby.
Raiders Himanshu and Narender scored 18 raid points but the defense lost its form and the Thalaiva was smashed by a margin of 17 points. These are contrasting emotions that the Tamil Thalaiva has to go through as they take on the UP Yodha.
Tamil Thalaiva has earned only 90 raid points in 5 games while it has conceded 174. These are not the statistics that win you the game. Hence the Thalaiva has to survive hand to mouth at least till Pawan is back. Coach Udaya Kumar does not want to rush with Pawan as he is in rehab.
All-rounder Visvanath has been a revelation with his moves as well as his assists. Right corner Sagar and right cover Ashish have been working steadily, but M Abhishek and left corner Sahil Gulia have been mighty inconsistent.
Though the Thalaiva enjoys a good record against the UP Yodha, they cannot rest on their past laurels. They have forced the Yodha more than once in the past to TIE the game. If Tamil Thalaiva cannot win, forcing a TIE should be the mantra.
This will be a contest of unforced errors between these teams. Both teams have been lazy in their defense and have conceded too many points throughout their matches. The absence of Pawan is unfortunate but a reality.
Raiders Narender and Himanshu Singh will target Yodha captain Nitesh Kumar while defender Sagar will try and neutralize either Pardeep or Surender. This ploy has worked against the Yodha as some of their opponents have trapped both Pardeep and Surender. This is the only way the Thalaiva can approach this game.
The Yodha will need to look at its defense combinations as this will be a good opportunity to try out new defenders. Left corner Sumit needs a partner in the right cover region who thinks and reciprocates like him. UP Yodha will have to be careful about the leakage of points in the first half as if they trail in the first half they tend to go on the defensive.
UP Yodha will win.
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