It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and vivo Pro Kabaddi will play the perfect companion.
The first match on Christmas Day will see Pardeep Narwal battle old friends when U.P. Yoddha take on the Patna Pirates. In the second game, Puneri Paltan and Telugu Titans will aim to secure their maiden win of vivo PKL season 8, and in the main event, the Jaipur Pink Panthers will go head-to-head against the Haryana Steelers.
Check out our preview for all three games:
On Christmas Day, an emotional reunion is on the cards when Pardeep Narwal and U.P. Yoddha battle Patna Pirates. The mercurial raider led the Pirates to three straight vivo PKL titles and won individual accolades galore during his time with the team. It will undoubtedly be an emotional affair for Pardeep and the Pirates when they meet tomorrow, but it will be business as usual on the mat for both.
Monu Goyat, who scored 16 points on his second debut for the Patna Pirates against the Haryana Steelers, will also face his former side. He will be eager to lead his new team to victory against the team that employed him last season.
The Patna Pirates and U.P. Yoddha have faced off eight times in the vivo PKL. The Pirates hold a slender 4-3 lead in their head-to-head matches, with one game finishing in a tie.
The Puneri Paltan had a rough start to their vivo PKL campaign, losing 41-30 to Dabang Delhi K.C. Nitin Tomar’s impactful performance and Aslam Inamdar’s cameo from the bench were a couple of positives for the Paltan. But the defence and Rahul Chaudhari will need to step up for their team to succeed.
Telugu Titans mounted an incredible comeback late in the game against the Tamil Thalaivas. They almost threw it all away before redeeming themselves in the final raid of the match to secure a tie. Siddharth Desai finished the game with 11 raid points while Rajnish deputized well, chipping in with five raid points. Sandeep Kandola finished with a High 5 while Ruturaj Koravi contributed three tackle points. If the Titans can tighten the ship on defence, they could go a long way this season.
The Puneri Paltan have won seven of their 14 matches against the Telugu Titans, who have emerged victorious on six occasions. The teams shared the spoils once.
The Jaipur Pink Panthers suffered a 34-27 defeat against the Gujarat Giants in their season-opener. However, there were plenty of positives to build upon. Arjun Deshwal’s outstanding Super 10 and Sandeep Dhull’s strong work from Left Corner were the highlights of the game for Jaipur. If skipper Deepak Hooda can get going, the Panthers will be tough to contain.
The Steelers finished on the wrong end of a thriller in their first game against the Patna Pirates, losing 42-39. Coach Rakesh Kumar will take pride in his team’s resilience and all-rounder Rohit Gulia’s performance, who finished with ten raid points. The legendary Surender Nada scored a High 5 in his first vivo PKL game in almost three years, showcasing that he’s still a game-changer on defence. The Steelers will see their opening game as nothing more than a blip and focus on securing their first win on Saturday.
Jaipur Pink Panthers hold a 4-2 lead in their head-to-head matches against Haryana Steelers. The teams have played out a tie twice in vivo PKL.
Match 10: Patna Pirates vs. U.P. Yoddha, 7:30 PM IST
Match 11: Puneri Paltan vs Telugu Titans, 8:30 PM IST
Match 12: Jaipur Pink Panthers vs. Haryana Steelers, 9:30 PM IST