U.P. Yoddha’s next assignment in their home leg sees them take on Zone B toppers from Season 5, Bengal Warriors on Sunday. The home team have never managed to beat Bengal Warriors in their games so far and will want to put an end to this streak before their home crowd.
This match will be the second encounter between the two sides this season, having already played out an enthralling tie just about a fortnight ago. Prashanth Kumar Rai was outstanding on the night scoring 13 raid points for his team, whereas Maninder Singh delivered a raiding masterclass for his team with 16 points.
Match 49 (Zone B): U.P. Yoddha vs. Bengal Warriors
Head-to-head: U.P. Yoddha 0 – 2 Bengal Warriors. 2 ties.
U.P. Yoddha succumbed to their second straight loss in their home leg last night after a scintillating second-half display from Bengaluru Bulls. The home team were outstanding in the first half, though, repeatedly picking up the Bengaluru Bulls players with ease. U.P. Yoddha will draw confidence from that first half display and aim to emulate that against a strong Bengal Warriors outfit. They will leapfrog all the other teams and reach the top spot in Zone B if they manage a win here.
Bengal Warriors were involved in a close contest in their previous game where they lost 27-29 to Patna Pirates. All-rounder Ran Singh was brilliant on the night, leading his team with seven raid points. A win over U.P. Yoddha would propel them into second place in Zone B, just two points behind leaders Bengaluru Bulls.
The big battle –
Prashanth Kumar Rai vs. PO Surjeet Singh
Prashanth Kumar Rai has been splendid for U.P. Yoddha, leading the team with 69 raid points. His innate ability to pick off bonus points also ensures that he draws ill-timed tackles from defenders, making him a potent raider for his side.
With 19 tackle points in 6 games, PO Surjeet has led the Bengal Warriors defence by example. The Right Cover has been a rock for his side and, with U.P. Yoddha boasting of two strong left raiders in Prashanth Kumar Rai and Shrikant Jadhav, his role in the side will become even more crucial.
The raider has only managed one raid point against Singh in VIVO Pro Kabaddi so far which favours Bengal Warriors going into this competition. But Rai’s form in this campaign is a huge bonus for them and he will want to get the better of Singh in this game to set the record straight.
Key Khiladi –
Jeeva Kumar – U.P. Yoddha
Jeeva Kumar’s return has been a timely boost for U.P. Yoddha. The Cover defender has scored five points in his three games this campaign and is expected to feature more heavily for U.P. Yoddha in defence once he has more game-time under his belt.
Maninder Singh – Bengal Warriors
With 49 raid points in just five games, Maninder Singh has been an offensive juggernaut for Bengal Warriors. The raider has managed two Super 10s and is averaging an impressive 9.8 raid points this campaign.