Puneri Paltan vs UP Yoddha Match Prediction: Who will win today's Pro Kabaddi 2017 match?
Will the Pune defence be able to stop the UP attack?
In the first fixture of the Super-Playoffs of the Pro Kabaddi League Season 5, it will be an eliminator match between the Puneri Paltan and UP Yoddha to progress onto the next stage and it will be held at the Dome, NSCI in Mumbai.
The two teams finished second and third in Zone A and Zone B to seal their spot in the knockouts. Puneri Paltan is coming into this match on the back of a one-point loss against the Gujarat Fortunegiants from Friday evening while UP Yoddha slumped to a big 64-24 defeat against the Bengaluru Bulls in their last fixture, but the team had fielded a second string side in that match having qualified for the playoffs.
The two teams have clashed against each other just once earlier in the league and the match turned out to be an edge-of-the-seat thriller with Puneri Paltan coming out on top by a slender margin of just one point.
When it comes to the attack, the UP Yoddha have an upper hand over Puneri Paltan given their duo of frontline raiders, Nitin Tomar and Rishank Devadiga who have picked up over 320 points between themselves. Moreover, they have a cushion in the presence of Surender Singh, who plays as the third raider and is in prime form with a couple of consecutive Super-10 outings.
Their defence is primarily manned by Jeeva Kumar in the cover position with the young Sagar Krishna and Nitesh Kumar in either corner, both of whom have given some stellar performances over the course of the season. To complete the starting seven, Gurvinder Singh or Pankaj might be included in the scheme of things, to add depth to the defence.
Puneri Paltan, on the other hand, relies majorly on their skipper, Deepak Hooda to do the bulk of the raiding and if he is to be rendered out of the equation the team will be in deep trouble.
Rajesh Mondal does thrive in pressure situations but has not been able to single-handedly rip apart the rival defence. Sandeep Narwal and Girish Ernak have been stellar as corner defenders and will look to continue in the same fashion. Young guns Monu and Rinku Narwal, both able all-rounders will also take to the mat alongside the veteran Dharmaraj Cheralathan.
Puneri Paltan vs UP Yoddha match prediction
UP may have a slight advantage with their attack and if their defence comes to the party as well, they can well be able to keep Puneri Paltan at bay by primarily keeping Deepak Hooda and Monu off the mat for long periods of time.