Telugu Titans find themselves in a must-win situation against Puneri Paltan to keep their bleak hopes of making the vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 7 playoffs alive when the sides square off at the Tau Devilal Sports Complex in Panchkula on Thursday. Telugu Titans, in fact, must win all their remaining games and hope that results elsewhere go in their favour to qualify for the playoffs. Puneri Paltan, on the other hand, are out of the playoffs reckoning but will be confident about their chances against Telugu Titans having already beaten them once this season.
Match 119: Telugu Titans vs Puneri Paltan
Head-to-head: Telugu Titans 6 – 6 Puneri Paltan. 1 Tie.
Win rate: 27.78%
Best Raider: Siddharth Desai
Best Defender: Vishal Bhardwaj
With their chances of making the playoffs hanging by a thread, Telugu Titans cannot afford to drop anymore points. Even collecting maximum points from their remaining games may not be enough to secure playoffs qualification but Telugu Titans will be aiming to do everything in their power to continue fighting. ‘Baahubali’ Siddharth Desai has looked unstoppable for most of the latter half of the league stage and will be heading into the clash after a 22-raid points effort last time around. Rajnish has been a good foil for Desai of late and has revived their ace raider frequently, while also pulling off stunning raids himself in pressure situations. Desai and Rajnish will, of course, fancy their chances against Puneri Paltan’s at times indecisive defence, making for an exciting encounter on the cards. In defence, Vishal Bhardwaj has looked rock solid, but needs to be complemented in a better manner by the likes of C. Arun, Farhad Milaghardan and their captain Abozar Mohajermighani.
Win rate: 30%
Best Raider: Pankaj Mohite
Best Defender: Surjeet Singh
Puneri Paltan have improved as the season progressed, with their raiders in particular, showing their potential in the latter half of the league stage. While Manjeet became their go-to raider towards the middle of the league phase, Pankaj Mohite has taken on that mantle in recent games having looked impressive throughout the campaign. However, more is expected of Nitin Tomar and Sushant Sail while raiding as well. Coach Anup Kumar’s men go into the clash knowing they can do the double over Telugu Titans with another win against them as they look to end their season on a positive note despite no longer being in the playoffs race. Their defence though has to improve for that to happen and will head into the fixture on the back of a 40-60 loss against Dabang Delhi K.C. Skipper Surjeet Singh must lead by example along with other seniors like Girish Ernak. Balasaheb Jadhav and Sagar Krishna have also shown glimpses of brilliance in defence and will be striving for consistency in their remaining matches.