What’s the only thing better than a vivo Pro Kabaddi double-header? A vivo Pro Kabaddi triple-header on Saturday!
In the first game, Pawan Sehrawat and the Bengaluru Bulls will take on the Puneri Paltan and post that, U Mumba will battle Telugu Titans. In the main event, Jaipur Pink Panthers will go head-to-head against Tamil Thalaivas.
Check out our preview for all three matches:
Match 70: Bengaluru Bulls vs Puneri Paltan
The Bengaluru Bulls have suffered a slight dip in form. They have lost their last two games and now sit just two points clear of fourth-placed U.P. Yoddha. While they were comfortably second-best against the Patna Pirates, they were slightly unlucky in their last game against the Bengal Warriors. The Bulls had built a substantial lead, but it was wiped out by a lucky eight-point raid, post which they lost momentum and couldn’t mount a comeback. Bengaluru will have to dust themselves off and focus on beating the Puneri Paltan to avoid slipping to a third-straight loss which could also see them slip down the points table if results elsewhere don’t go their way.
The Puneri Paltan had seemingly gotten their season on track when they won back-to-back games but have since lost two straight and face an uphill task to secure a spot in the playoffs. The Paltan’s raiding unit, outside of Aslam Inamdar, isn’t quite up to the mark. Nitin Tomar and Rahul Chaudhari have been afterthoughts this season. Pankaj Mohite has struggled to replicate his impeccable form from last season. The Paltan rank last in the league in average raid points. Pune desperately needs a win to boost their morale and keep their playoff hopes afloat.
Bengaluru Bulls vs Puneri Paltan head-to-head
The Paltan hold a 7-6 lead in the all-time head-to-head series against the Bulls. However, Bengaluru emerged victorious when the two teams last met earlier this season.
Match 71: U Mumba vs Telugu Titans
U Mumba’s four-game winless streak has seen them drop to ninth in the vivo PKL standings. They have managed to tie their last two games, but three points won’t suffice if they want to make a push for a playoff spot. U Mumba’s raiding unit has been subpar this season. They rank 11th in the league with an average of 18.09 raid points per game. Abhishek Singh and V Ajith Kumar have tried their best but haven’t delivered consistently. U Mumba’s defence hasn’t been that great either. They rank seventh in the league with 9.55 tackle points per game, which isn’t ideal for a team that relies on its defensive might to win games. U Mumba are in dire need of a win to get their campaign back on track.
The Telugu Titans ended their 10-game wait for a victory with a 35-34 win over the Jaipur Pink Panthers. Rajnish and Adarsh T were the heroes for the Titans, who finally came out on the right side of a close contest after losing four games by one point. A place in the playoffs is still a distant dream but the victory over the Pink Panthers could kickstart a strong run for the Titans. Given how tight the table is, a few wins on the trot could see the Titans claw their way back into playoff contention. But they won’t want to think too far ahead and will focus solely on trying to beat U Mumba.
U Mumba vs Telugu Titans head-to-head
Through 13 games, U Mumba hold a 7-4 lead in their head-to-head matches against the Telugu Titans. Two games between these teams have finished in a tie. U Mumba won 48-38 when the two teams met earlier this season.
Match 72: Jaipur Pink Panthers vs Tamil Thalaivas
The Jaipur Pink Panthers suffered a deflating loss at the hands of the Telugu Titans in their previous outing. Jaipur’s raiding unit was at its potent best, as Arjun Deshwal and Deepak Hooda combined for 21 points. But the defence had a poor outing, especially in the second half, where they picked up only three tackle points. The Pink Panthers will want to write this loss off as a minor blip and look to get back to winning ways on Saturday.
The Tamil Thalaivas were unlucky to have lost in the manner they did against the Gujarat Giants in their previous outing, but they have only themselves to blame for blowing another substantial lead late in the game. The Thalaivas have been guilty of throwing away significant advantages in multiple games and will want to curb that in the second half of the season. Their defence continued to be the team’s driving force. Surjeet Singh and Sagar sit atop the list of the league’s top tackle point scorers list with 37. The Thalaivas will expect another big performance from their dominant defensive duo against a potent Jaipur raiding unit.
Jaipur Pink Panthers vs Tamil Thalaivas head-to-head
The Pink Panthers have won three and lost one of their five matches against the Thalaivas. The two teams shared the spoils when they met earlier this season.
Match 70: Bengaluru Bulls vs Puneri Paltan, 7:30 PM IST
Match 71: U Mumba vs Telugu Titans, 8:30 PM IST
Match 72: Jaipur Pink Panthers vs Tamil Thalaivas, 9:30 PM IST
Catch all the LIVE action from vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 8 on the Star Sports Network and LIVE streaming on Disney+Hotstar.