Pro Kabaddi League: Dabang Delhi KC, Bengal Warriors in action on Day 3

Image Source: ANI

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], December 24 (ANI): Day 3 of Pro Kabaddi League Season 8 will see another triple-header with in-form U Mumba taking on Season 7 league toppers Dabang Delhi KC in the opener on Friday.

The match will be followed by this season’s second Southern Derby with Bengaluru Bulls looking to bounce back from an upsetting Day 1 loss against a much-changed Tamil Thalaivas squad. The defending champions Bengal Warriors will lock horns with Gujarat Giants in the third match of the day.

While all the eyes were on captain Fazel Atrachali, it was the raiding department who impressed in U Mumba’s first match of the season. Abhishek Singh (19 points), ably supported by V Ajith Kumar, pulled off an impressive performance for the Mumbai team, who were also defensively resolute against a Bengaluru Bulls side with great raiding prowess.

But up against them will be the league’s most exciting raider Naveen Kumar of Dabang Delhi KC. The star raider began his season with a 16-point performance against Puneri Paltan and will look to replicate the success from 2019 where he clinched 22 SUPER 10s in 23 appearances. Manjeet Chhillar’s error-prone defending will be a worry for the Delhi franchise though, especially with Abhishek Singh looking good on Day 1.

In the second Southern Derby of the season, Bengaluru Bulls will clash with Tamil Thalaivas. Pawan Sehrawat had a surprisingly off-colour performance against the U Mumba defence on Day 1 and Tamil Thalaivas will be planning to ensure the same thing happens on Friday.

Thaliavas captain Surjeet Singh had a great outing in the side’s opening match, tackling Siddharth Desai effectively out of the match. The defender will be eyeing to do the same against the Bulls raiding unit of Pawan and Chandran Ranjit. The match will likely be decided on how well Thalaivas handle the Bulls’ attack.

Thalaivas were reliant on Manjeet for the raid points and will want K Prapanjan to also step up against a Bulls defence that was uncharacteristically error-prone on Day 1.

In the third match of the day, Bengal Warriors will lock horns with Gujarat Giants. Mohammad Esmaeil Nabibakhsh, the Irani superstar of Bengal Warriors, was the main factor in Bengal’s crucial Day 1 victory. The all-rounder scored 7 raid points, 1 bonus point and 3 tackles to lead the charge while captain Maninder Singh chipped in with 7 points.

The lack of an explosive raiding performance on Day 1 might be a concern for Bengal Warriors considering Gujarat Giants on paper have the most experienced defensive line. The Giants will have the experienced Sunil Kumar, Ravinder Pahal, Girish Maruti Ernak and Parvesh Bhainswal available to stop the Bengal raiders. Girish had an impressive outing against Jaipur Pink Panthers and it would not be a surprise if the match is a low-scoring affair.

All three matches will be played at The Sheraton Grand, Whitefield Bengaluru – the fixed venue for Season 8 of PKL. (ANI)

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