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Pro Kabaddi League 2017 Season 5: Top 5 defenders from Nagpur leg

The Chhillars are back and so is Ravinder 'the Hawk' Pahal


Raiders like Sukesh Hegde have suffered at the hands of good defence units this season
Raiders like Sukesh Hegde have suffered at the hands of good defensive units this season

The Nagpur leg of Pro Kabaddi League 2017 is done and dusted after producing six days of exhilarating kabaddi action. The high-quality kabaddi augurs well for the organizers who are experimenting this year with a much longer season. In fact, it’s the quality on display that has maintained the interest of the fans even in the second week of the league.

As always, the names like Rohit Kumar, Jang Kun Lee and Pardeep Narwal dominated the headlines. However, the inability of some star raiders to inspire their teams to victory despite spectacular individual performances once again underlined the fact that the game belongs to defenders.

Time and again we have witnessed how a weak defensive unit can undo all the good work done by the team's raiders. Bengaluru Bulls captain Rohit Kumar suffered the most from this as his defense failed to replicate his heroics in the raiding department, and as a result often ended up finishing the match with a result they wouldn’t have liked.

Unlike raiding, defense is completely a combined effort more often than not. Yet some names have particularly stood out with clinical showings in the defense department. 5 of the best defenders of the Nagpur leg are:

#1 Ravinder Pahal


Pahal hasn't found much support except for young Mahender in the Bulls ranks
Pahal hasn't found much support except for young Mahender in the Bulls ranks

In the previous seasons, Pahal made his name defending for a team that hardly ever threatened to make any impact with its raiding. But subsequent seasons saw his form taper off and his menacing thigh and ankle holds became a part of the folklore of starting days of Pro Kabaddi. However, if his performances in the Nagpur leg are anything to go by, the Pahal of old seems to have returned, much to the joy of the Bulls setup. Not only the swagger of yore is back but also the penchant for taking down raiders with the trademark double ankle hold.

He has cemented his place in the right corner for the franchise this season and can often be seen being targeted by the raider, underlining his place of importance in the Bulls line of defence. He might not be leading the charts with 16 tackle points from 6 games to show against his name but his graph is moving rapidly in the right direction and some scintillating performances appear to be around the corner from Binda.

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