Tamil Thalaivas and Dabang Delhi K.C., after disastrous campaigns in Season 5 of VIVO Pro Kabaddi, look to do well in their last few matches and end on a high, and on Tuesday they play U Mumba and Jaipur Pink Panthers respectively. Both Mumbai and Jaipur can still nurture Super Playoffs hopes. Here is a brief look at the teams in action today at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur.
Match 117 (Inter Zone Wildcard): U Mumba vs Tamil Thalaivas
Head-to-head: U Mumba 1-0 Tamil Thalaivas
Tamil Thalaivas’ Super Playoffs hopes may be lost but the debutants will still have plenty to prove against an inconsistent U Mumba side on Tuesday. The Thalaivas must still be smarting from losing all their home matches and will play for pride in a contest where they have nothing to lose. U Mumba’s campaign, meanwhile, will completely depend on how Puneri Paltan do from here even if they win both their Zone A matches in hand by huge margins.
U Mumba looked like a feeble unit in their previous game against Jaipur, allowing Manjeet Chhillar and Co. to outdo them in spite of Kashiling Adake and Anup Kumar’s best efforts. Anup has been giving everything in both attack and defence but the pressure of handling both jobs has left him a little subdued. Iranian Hadi Oshtorak showed he can be a force to be reckoned with in the previous match and U Mumba will expect him to take charge should Surinder Singh and Kuldeep Singh fail.
Tamil Thalaivas bank heavily on captain Ajay Thakur and Tuesday’s game might see them providing more playing time to their newer players like Vineet Kumar and D. Pradap. K. Prapanjan has been inconsistent and will be keen to prove his point in the last few matches. Amit Hooda has also failed to come up with the goods for the Thalaivas on most occasions this season and will be looking to show what he can do now that the pressure of qualification is off.
Khel Kabaddi Khiladi:
Captain Cool is more than willing to let others in his team who are doing well take the spotlight but he has still been the most consistent player for U Mumba with 131 points from 20 matches.
Ajay Thakur has led Tamil Thalaivas from the front on every occasion this season and he comes into the match with scores of 15, 20 and 10 in his previous 3 encounters.
Match 118 (Zone A): Jaipur Pink Panthers vs Dabang Delhi K.C.
Head-to-head: Jaipur Pink Panthers 7-2 Dabang Delhi K.C.
Jaipur Pink Panthers will think they are down but not out even after Saturday’s big loss to Puneri Paltan. They have 50 points in Zone A so far and will want to win all the matches they have in hand to bring the third-placed Puneri Paltan under pressure in their home leg.
Jaipur have been inconsistent so far mainly owing to the injuries their players have picked up. Manjeet Chhillar seems to be managing defence well in spite of the niggle he is carrying and his presence on the mat for as long as possible is vital for Jaipur if they are to get maximum points from this contest. Jasvir Singh and Pawan Kumar weren’t able to step up their game in their previous match against Pune and will look to make merry against a weak Delhi defence.
Delhi, meanwhile, haven’t had many performances to write home about of late. Their captain Meraj Sheykh will have to return to form and support the duo of R. Sriram and Abolfazl Maghsodlou if Delhi are to put the home team under any kind of pressure. The defence sometimes shows some sparks of brilliance through Swapnil Shinde and Satpal but they will have to be a lot more consistent to get a positive outcome for their team.
Khel Kabaddi Khiladi:
Young Rawal has been a revelation for his side and is a true all-rounder in every sense of the term, holding the defence together and then getting vital points while raiding. He has 56 points from 17 matches played so far.
R. Sriram hasn’t been used by Delhi much in spite of looking their most effective raider. After his impressive performance against Gujarat Fortunegiants, he is expected to start the game again and keep up his good show.
Catch the action live on the Star Sports network and hotstar from 7.30 pm onwards.