The final day of the second Inter Zone Challenge Week in Season 5 of VIVO Pro Kabaddi will see Bengaluru Bulls lock horns with Puneri Paltan, while hosts Haryana Steelers take on Telugu Titans at the Motilal Nehru School of Sports in Sonepat on Sunday. The Bulls will desperately be looking for a win after a sixth consecutive defeat against Haryana on Saturday, whereas the Paltan will be hoping for a third successive victory. In the second match of the evening, the in-form Steelers will look to pile on the agony for Telugu Titans.
Match 71: Bengaluru Bulls vs Puneri Paltan
Head-to-head: Bengaluru Bulls 4-4 Puneri Paltan
The Bulls will come up against a well-balanced Pune side that’ll take some beating. With stars both in attack and defence, the rest of the competition have struggled to find a chink in Pune’s armour thus far. Captain Rohit Kumar and Ajay Kumar will have to share most of the responsibility in offence, while their defence also needs to put on a strong showing against a strong Pune attacking line. It’s high time Bengaluru really picked up or it will be too late for them as far as their play-off chances are concerned.
The Paltan, meanwhile, will be confident of continuing their rich vein of form that has seen them win six out of their eight matches thus far. The Maharashtra outfit is a well-oiled unit that is confident both in attack and defence. Deepak Hooda, Rajesh Mondal and all-rounder Sandeep Narwal have all been crucial in forming a strong core for the Punekars. Girish Maruti Ernak and the evergreen Dharmaraj Cheralathan’s experience have also had a role to play for their cause.
Match 72: Haryana Steelers vs Telugu Titans
Hosts Haryana, on the other hand, will look to maintain their unbeaten run in their home leg against Hyderabad. Prashanth Kumar Rai will be the cynosure of attention in attack for the north-Indian side after picking up 16 points against the Bulls on Saturday, while Surender Nada and Mohit Chhillar will again have to assume responsibility in defence. Surjeet Singh and Wazir Singh’s contribution cannot be overlooked either as the Steelers now target rising to the summit of their zone.
The Titans, however, will need to start the match better than their last outing against Pune in which the Maharashtra outfit enforced two All-Outs on them before they even got on the board. Raid Machine Rahul Chaudhari has had a below-par season when compared to his lofty standards, however, he has also lacked support from his team-mates, in all fairness. Their defence needs to do a whole lot better with the likes of Vishal Bhardwaj, Sombir and Rohit Rana, all culpable for poor displays over the first half of the campaign.
Catch the action live on the Star Sports network and hotstar from 7.30 pm onwards.