Puneri Paltan’s home leg continues on Wednesday as they come up against Tamil Thalaivas at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mahalunge, Balewadi in Pune. The home team lost to Patna Pirates in their previous match and will be keen to bounce back with a victory in their final home game. Tamil Thalaivas come into this match on the back of an eight-match losing streak and will be eager to end that run and finish the season with a flourish.
Match 96: Puneri Paltan vs Tamil Thalaivas
Head-to-head: Puneri Paltan 1 – 1 Tamil Thalaivas. 1 Tie.
Win Rate: 31.25%
Best Raider: Manjeet
Best Defender: Surjeet Singh
After a good start to their home leg which saw them winning against Gujarat Fortunegiants, Puneri Paltan slipped to a big loss against Patna Pirates on Sunday. Returning raider Nitin Tomar failed to make a big impact in that match as he scored just 6 points from 12 raids. His Super 10 was instrumental in the team’s first home win and they will hope he can score big again when they face Tamil Thalaivas. Manjeet, the team’s leading raid point scorer, and Pankaj Mohite, scored 7 raid points each, while Amit Kumar came off the bench to put in a decent all-round performance, scoring 3 raid and 2 tackle points. However, the team’s defence was an area of concern as they managed only 8 tackle points on the night as compared to the 18 they scored against Gujarat Fortunegiants. The performance of the defence will have to improve if they are to keep fighting for a Playoffs spot in their remaining games.
Win Rate: 18.75%
Best Raider: Rahul Chaudhari
Best Defender: Manjeet Chhillar
Tamil Thalaivas’ dismal run continued in their previous match against Haryana Steelers, which they lost by 8 points. ‘Showman’ Rahul Chaudhari’s Super 10 headlined their performance but some crucial errors in defence cost them the match in the second period. Mohit Chhillar scored 4 of their 9 tackle points in the match while their leading defender of the season - Manjeet Chhillar – could manage only 2. However, V Ajith Kumar’s excellent form in recent matches and Kenyan Victor Obiero’s 5-point performance, including a Super Tackle, in their previous match are some positives the team can draw from. A lot will depend on the seniors like Chaudhari, Manjeet and Ran Singh if the team is to get the win they have been looking for though, and their performance could determine if Tamil Thalaivas are able to deny Puneri Paltan a second home victory.