The final leg of VIVO Pro Kabaddi Season 5 will kick off today at Pune’s Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex and the opening day has a couple of intense battles on the cards for fans. Here is a look at the matches of the day.
Match 122 (Zone A): Puneri Paltan vs Gujarat Fortunegiants
Head-to-head: Puneri Paltan 0-1 Gujarat Fortunegiants
While Pune will want to get closer to the top spot with a win, Gujarat will look to consolidate their position at the top and gain an advantage for themselves going into the playoffs.
Puneri Paltan look like the most well-rounded side of Season 5 so far with captain Deepak Hooda and Rajesh Mondal handling the attack, while all-rounder Sandeep Narwal and Girish Maruti Ernak taking charge of the defence. Gujarat will have to attack early like they did against Patna and target Pune’s main raider Hooda if they are to walk away with a win in this contest.
Gujarat Fortunegiants have been in dominating form and are coming into this match on the back of four wins. Their main strength has been the strategic gameplay of their coach Manpreet Singh. He will look to use his corners Fazel Atrachali and Abozar Mighani to stop the Paltan march while attacking with in-form men Chandran Ranjit and Sachin just as he did against Patna.
Khel Kabaddi Khiladi:
The all-rounder has been Pune’s utility man, scoring in raids and assisting in defence in the hour of need. He was the highest scorer in Pune’s previous match against Jaipur with 9 raids points and 1 tackle point.
The Iranian scored a High 5 against the mighty Patna attack in their last game and currently has 53 tackle points from 20 games.
Match 123 (Zone B): Bengal Warriors vs Tamil Thalaivas
Head-to-head: Bengal Warriors 1-1 Tamil Thalaivas
Bengal Warriors will look to maintain their place at the top of Zone B by defeating Tamil Thalaivas but one can expect the Thalaivas to fight tooth and nail as well in a game where they have nothing to lose since they are already out of the playoffs reckoning.
Maninder Singh has been Bengal’s star raider and his quick-fire raiding has won the Warriors innumerable games of late. He is well supported in defence by captain Surjeet Singh, who makes sure the raider is revived soon whenever he is sent to the bench by the opposition, giving Maninder the freedom to raid without much worry. However, Shrikant Tewthia outdid his captain in the side’s previous game against Pune and the Warriors will expect a lot from him with the form he has been showing.
The player one can associate with Tamil Thalaivas in Season 5 has undoubtedly been Ajay Thakur. The Thalaivas captain has saved his side from imminent defeats many times and he will look to secure another win for his side against Bengal.
Khel Kabaddi Khiladi:
Tewthia looked lethal in the game against Pune and will look to improve on his tally of 29 points from 19 matches.
Thakur has been the heart and soul of the Tamil Thalaivas attack and he will once again look to assert dominance against Bengal to give the debut team’s fans another win in what will be their second last game of the season.
Catch the action live on the Star Sports network and hotstar from 7.30 pm onwards.