The hosts will be eager to bounce back after a big loss in their last match.
Haryana Steelers will be eager to beat Telugu Titans at the Tau Devilal Sports Complex in Panchkula and end their home leg in vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 7 with a win. They will keen to make amends after a loss at the same venue in their last outing and will view Friday’s clash against Telugu Titans as an opportunity to set the record straight. Telugu Titans, meanwhile, also lost their previous match at the venue last night and are out of the playoffs reckoning.
Match 121: Haryana Steelers vs Telugu Titans
Head-to-head: Haryana Steelers 1 – 3 Telugu Titans.
Win rate: 60%
Best Raider: Vikash Kandola
Best Defender: Sunil
The hosts will want to put the loss from their last game behind them and finish their home leg positively. With a spot in the playoffs already secure, Haryana Steelers have the liberty of rotating some of their players. However, they don’t want to lose any momentum heading into the playoffs and will want all their big guns to be confident and firing. Prashanth Kumar Rai put in a stellar individual display in Haryana Steelers’ last game and he seems to be peaking at the right time with the playoffs less than two weeks away. He along with Vikash Kandola and Vinay make for a formidable raiding unit against any defence in the league. Their defence though needs to remain focused and ensure that their performance from the last match was a one-off. Vikas Kale, Ravi Kumar and Vishal have shone at various times over the course of the campaign, but they will need to up their game further for the next few matches and stick together under the guidance of their skipper Dharmaraj Cheralathan on the mat.
Win rate: 26.31%
Best Raider: Siddharth Desai
Best Defender: Vishal Bhardwaj
Telugu Titans, meanwhile, will be playing for pride and can experiment with their starting seven in their remaining matches as well. They chose not to play Vishal Bhardwaj and skipper Abozar Mohajermighani in the last game, and it remains to be seen if they return to the line-up. One player from their ranks who will be confident and raring to return to court though is raider Rakesh Gowda, who scored a game-high 17 points last time around. Defenders Aakash Arsul and Krushna Madane will also be in a buoyant frame of mind on the back of High 5 displays last night. However, coach Gholamreza Mazandarani will be expecting much more from ‘Baahubali’ Siddharth Desai and Rajnish after quiet outings for the duo in the previous game. Desai starred with 18 raid points in a win for Telugu Titans against Haryana Steelers earlier this season and he will be hoping to recapture some of that form on Friday.