The final match of the Pune leg will see home side Puneri Paltan face a visit from reigning champions Bengaluru Bulls at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mahalunge in Balewadi. While Puneri Paltan will be hoping to close the gap on the top six with a win, Bengaluru Bulls will be aiming to fend off U Mumba and U.P. Yoddha, who are hot on their heels in the vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 7 standings.
Match 99: Puneri Paltan vs. Bengaluru Bulls
Head-to-head: Puneri Paltan 4 - 5 Bengaluru Bulls
Win Rate: 29.41%
Best Raider: Manjeet
Best Defender: Surjeet Singh
After victory in the opening fixture of their home leg, Puneri Paltan have endured a torrid run since, losing to Patna Pirates by 22 points before blowing a seven-point lead in under two minutes against Tamil Thalaivas to settle for a tie. They find themselves 11 points adrift the playoffs spots with five matches left in the campaign and hence need to beat Bengaluru Bulls to bolster their chances of finishing inside the top six. Raiders Manjeet, Pankaj Mohite and Nitin Tomar have all scored a Super 10 each in their first three home matches and coach Anup Kumar will be hoping that his raiding trio can continue their stellar form. The defence, outside of skipper Surjeet Singh, has been found wanting, with the likes of Girish Maruti Ernak, Hadi Tajik and Balasaheb Jadhav struggling to find consistency so far this season. If the defence can step up in the final five matches of the season, Puneri Paltan might just be able to sneak into the top six.
Win Rate: 52.25%
Best Raider: Pawan Kumar Sehrawat
Best Defender: Mahender Singh
Despite winning four of their last six matches, defending champions Bengaluru Bulls find themselves just six points clear of seventh-placed Jaipur Pink Panthers and thus are in the hunt for victories to solidify their place in the playoff spots. While reigning MVP Pawan Kumar Sehrawat has been at his brilliant best throughout the campaign and has already surpassed 200 raid points for the season, skipper Rohit Kumar has endured a poor campaign is currently the league’s 20h highest raid point scorer in Season 7. The defence, too, has a similar look, with Mahender Singh and his 44 tackle points leading the way for Bengaluru Bulls, while Amit Sheoran, the team’s second-most successful defender, has scored 33 tackle points. Coach Randhir Singh Sehrawat will be hoping for better outputs from the likes of Sheoran and Rohit over the remainder of the campaign, starting on Friday in Pune.