On Tuesday, a tantalising doubleheader will see two teams in the top half go to battle first, followed by two teams near the bottom.

The surging Patna Pirates will face U Mumba in the first game, and later, the Telugu Titans will go head-to-head against Gujarat Giants.

Check out our preview for both matches:

Match 47: Patna Pirates vs U Mumba

The Patna Pirates haven’t lost any of their last five games and sit second on the points table. None of the Pirates’ raiders features in the top 15 raid point scorers of Season 8, but they still have a healthy average of 19.57 raid points per game. Sachin, Monu Goyat and Prashanth Kumar Rai haven’t stood out individually but have been spectacular as a trio and key to the Pirates’ success this season. Patna’s defence is statistically the best in the league. They average 11.71 tackle points per game, which ranks first in vivo PKL Season 8. An efficient raiding unit and a spectacular defence are why the Pirates sit second on the points table. They will leapfrog Delhi and claim the top spot in the Season 8 standings if they win on Tuesday.

U Mumba have quietly had a good season. They are unbeaten in five games and sit fifth on the points table. U Mumba’s raiding unit has shown flashes of brilliance but isn’t exactly an elite and dependable unit. Only three teams are averaging fewer raid points per game than U Mumba. Their defence has been good and currently rank fifth in league with an average of 10.43 tackle points per game. The key to U Mumba’s success has been their discipline as a team. They have conceded the fewest points in the league and have the second-best points difference at +31. A victory over the Pirates on Tuesday will see U Mumba jump three spots to second on the points table.

Patna Pirates vs U Mumba head-to-head

U Mumba have won nine of their 14 matches against the Patna Pirates and have lost only 4. One game between the two teams has finished in a tie.

Match 48: Telugu Titans vs Gujarat Giants

A 48-38 loss to U Mumba in their previous outing meant that the Telugu Titans remain rooted at the bottom of the vivo PKL Season 8 standings. They have lost five of their seven matches this season and tied the other two. The Titans have been without Siddharth Desai for a while, severely dampening the team. Ankit Beniwal and Rajnish have held their own and have scored Super 10s this season, which has been a silver lining this season. Their defence is averaging nine tackle points this season, which ranks eighth in the league. The Titans are 13 points behind Jaipur Pink Panthers, who occupy the final playoff spot. They need to turn their fortunes around quickly to retain hopes of making it to the playoffs.

The Gujarat Giants are winless since their victory over the Jaipur Pink Panthers in their season-opener and have lost four of their last six games. Their young and inexperienced raiding unit ranks 10th in the league, which many expected. But surprisingly, their defence is averaging only 7.86 tackle points, which ranks 11th in the league. Their starters on defence have over 1000 tackle points combined in vivo PKL and were expected to be the team’s backbone. Coach Manpreet Singh will want his defence to step up in the upcoming games and turn the tide of their season in an upward trajectory.

Telugu Titans vs Gujarat Giants head-to-head

The Gujarat Giants lead 3-1 in their head-to-head series against the Telugu Titans through four matches. 

PKL Schedule for Tuesday, January 11

Match 47: Patna Pirates vs. U Mumba, 7:30 PM IST

Match 48: Telugu Titans vs. Gujarat Giants, 8:30 PM IST

Where to watch vivo Pro Kabaddi live?

Catch all the LIVE action from vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 8 on the Star Sports Network and LIVE streaming on Disney+Hotstar.