VIVO Pro Kabaddi action now shifts to the capital of Uttar Pradesh as Lucknow gears up to welcome their home team and their favourite stars. The Inter Zone Challenge Week continues with a couple of fresh encounters in store. One of the four new teams this season, Lucknow will be hosting their first VIVO Pro Kabaddi match ever, and the atmosphere at the Babu Banarasi Das Indoor Stadium is expected to be nothing short of electrifying. Here’s a look at Friday’s clashes.
Match 34: U.P. Yoddha vs U Mumba
U.P. Yoddha will enter tonight’s match with renewed zest and desire in their quest to start their home campaign on a winning note. The team, led by Nitin Tomar, looks in fine touch having been undefeated four times in their five games so far. Currently, sitting third in the Zone B points table, the league debutants will look to keep their all round-show intact against a solid U Mumba outfit.
U Mumba’s campaign has been laced with two wins and two defeats, with the Season 2 champions yet to show top form. They have a tally of only 10 points from four games, with plenty found wanting on both the attacking and defensive fronts. Captain Anup Kumar’s leadership qualities are indisputable but his raiding tactics have not been as per his lofty standards. With one of the best raiding units in the league on paper, it’s high time that the Mumbai raiders upped their game. The defence also needs to improve to restrict the likes of Tomar and Rishank Devadiga from the Lucknow camp.
Match 35: Bengaluru Bulls vs Jaipur Pink Panthers
Bengaluru Bulls' campaign has not been off to a great start as they have managed only 3 wins from their 8 matches so far. Though they lead the Zone B points table, one needs to take into account that they have played more matches than other teams in the zone. Captain Rohit Kumar has led the raiding department in style, however, the problem lies with their defence. Even though they are up against the bottom-placed team in Zone A, the Bulls need to be wary of their own shortcomings.
Jaipur Pink Panthers, meanwhile, have played the minimum number of matches (3) in the league so far but two losses mean they languish at the bottom of the Zone A points table. Jaipur is yet to get over the absence of main raider Selvamani K, who is nursing an injury after their first match. The other raiders in the team lack the killing edge. Captain Manjeet Chhillar has shown glimpses of his genius but needs more support. The team has a nice mix of experienced and young players but the coach needs to use his resources well if they are to duplicate their Season 1 dominance.
Catch the matches live on the Star Sports network and hotstar from 8 pm IST onwards.