Former Pro Kabaddi League winners Bengaluru Bulls have assembled a strong squad for the 2022 PKL season. The Randhir Singh Sehrawat-coached outfit have lost their star raider and season eight's captain Pawan Kumar Sehrawat ahead of the new tournament.
Many fans were shocked to see the Bulls release their captain ahead of the auction. They signed former Haryana Steelers captain Vikash Kandola for a whopping ₹1.7 crore at the auction. It looks like Vikash will be the new captain of the Bulls squad.
Here is a look at the full list of players retained by Bengaluru and the new players signed by them at the PKL 2022 auction:
Mayur Kadam, Yash Hooda, Rohit Kumar, Mahender Singh, GB More, Saurabh Nandal, Aman Antil, Vinod Lachmayya Naik, Bharat Naresh, Rajnesh Narwal, Vikash Kandola, Nageshor Tharu, Lal Mohar Yadav, Sachin Narwal, Rahul Khatik, Sudhakar Krishanth Kadam, Neeraj Narwal, and Harmanjit Singh.
Bengaluru have retained most of their defenders from the previous season and added some new faces to the raiding unit. Here's a look at their predicted Playing 7 for PKL 2022.
Bengaluru Bulls raiders – Vikash Kandola, Bharat Naresh and Neeraj Narwal
Former Haryana Steelers captain Vikash Kandola will lead the raiding unit of the Bengaluru Bulls in PKL 9. He has a ton of experience under his belt, having played for Haryana in multiple seasons.
Shedding some light on his numbers in the Pro Kabaddi League, Vikash Kandola has earned 613 points in just 77 matches. He has recorded 25 Super 10s and executed 16 super raids in the competition thus far.
Bharat Naresh had an impressive debut season with the Bulls in the 2021-22 season. He is likely to play the supporting raider's role in season nine as well. For the record, he scored 115 raid points in 23 matches of season eight.
Former Dabang Delhi KC player Neeraj Narwal completes the raiding unit of this team. Neeraj won the PKL championship with Delhi in the 2021-22 edition, scoring 47 points in 19 matches.
Bengaluru Bulls defenders - Saurabh Nandal, Aman Antil, Mahender Singh and Mayur Kadam
As mentioned above, Bengaluru have retained a majority of their defenders from the last season. Aman Antil and Saurabh Nandal are likely to be the two corner defenders in the Playing 7. Nandal scored 69 tackle points in 21 matches last season, registering a couple of High 5s.
Antil completed a half-century of tackle points in season eight as well, aggregating 53 tackle points. Mahender Singh and Mayur Kadam will likely play as the two cover defenders.
Left cover defender Mahender has been with the Bulls for quite some time. He has scored 220 tackle points and registered 14 High 5s in his PKL career thus far. Kadam did not have his best season in the 2021-22 edition as he managed only 14 points in 19 matches. However, the team management may give him a few more chances this season.
Bengaluru Bulls Predicted Playing 7 - Saurabh Nandal (Right Corner), Aman Antil (Left Corner), Bharat Naresh (Right In), Vikash Kandola (Left In), Mayur Kadam (Right Cover), Mahender Singh (Left Cover) and Neeraj Narwal (Center).