The second installment of the Star Sports Pro Kabaddi League is a few hours away from seeing their new champion being crowned. Last year’s runners up the U Mumba will be up against the Bengaluru Bulls in the grand finale at the NSCI indoor stadium in Mumbai. It will be an exciting contest between Mumba’s raiders and Bengaluru’s defenders, as both team will be expected to play to their strengths.
Pro Kabaddi League Final: Team news
The U Mumba have undoubtedly been the best team of the Pro Kabaddi League so far, and they would look to lay their hands on the trophy in their second final appearance. They lost to the Jaipur Pink Panthers last year. This year, they beat Patna Pirates 35-18 in a one-sided affair.
They looks like a well-oiled unit, and there are no injury worries. Anup Kumar will lead the pack with Rishank Devadiga and Shabeer Bapu joining in as other raiders. The defensive unit comprises of Jeeva Kumar, Mohit Chhillar, Pradeep Kumar and Vishal Prabhakar Mane.
Probable starting seven: Anup Kumar (c), Shabeer Bapu, Rishank Devadiga, Mohit Chhillar, Vishal Prabhakar Mane, Surender Nada, Pradeep Kumar.
The Bengaluru Bulls escaped with a 39-38 win against the Telugu Titans in the semifinal, and they should avoid committing last-minute blunders if they are to put up a stiff challenge against the U Mumba. Led by Manjeet Chhillar, the Bulls would bank heavily on their skipper’s performance on the mat. In the semifinal encounter on Friday, Manjeet spent 31 minutes on the mat without being dismissed even once.
Like Mumbai, Bengaluru too have managed to keep away injury concerns and they would go into the finale with their best combination. Ajay Thakur will spearhead the raiding and Rajesh Mondal will join him as the second raider. The Bulls might also require support from reserve raiders Ashish Chhokar and Rakesh Narwal if Mondal fails to deliver. The 40-year-old defender Dharmaraj Cheralathan will constitute the vulnerable right-corner area and he will be joined by Gurpreet and Joginder Narwal.
Probable starting seven: Manjeet Chhillar (c), Anup Kumar, Rajesh Mondal, Dharmaraj Cheralathan, Gurpreet, Joginder Narwal, Somvir Shekhar.
With a better head-to-head record and a die-hard fan base in their home ground, the U Mumba look to be the clear favourites ahead of the final. The Bengaluru Bulls, meanwhile, will look to turn the tables this time and clinch the silverware.