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Top spot in standings up for grabs for Bengaluru Bulls when they battle Bengal Warriors

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Two tantalisingg vivo Pro Kabaddi games are headed your way on Thursday

In the first game, Tamil Thalaivas will face the Gujarat Giants, and in the second, Pawan Sehrawat and the Bengaluru Bulls will take on Maninder Singh and the Bengal Warriors.

Check out our preview for both matches:

Match 66: Tamil Thalaivas vs Gujarat Giants

In their previous game, the Tamil Thalaivas had to rally late to earn a tie against the Jaipur Pink Panthers, their fifth of the season. The Surjeet Singh and Sagar duo continued to be the team’s lynchpin, as they combined for nine tackle points in another impressive showing. The raiding unit did not have the best outing, as they added only 16 points to their team’s total. The lack of a consistent raid point scorer has been the difference between a win and a tie for the Thalaivas on multiple occasions this season. The team needs better production from Ajinkya Pawar, Athul MS, K Prapanjan and Bhavani Rajput to end their eternal wait for a playoff appearance.

The Gujarat Giants are also coming into this game on the back of a tie in their previous game. They shared the spoils with U Mumba after a low-scoring 24-24 tie. The Giants’ defence was disciplined and gave up only 15 raid points, but the starting seven could only score eight tackle points, a poor return from one of the most experienced units in the league. This season, Gujarat’s defence was expected to be the team’s strength but has instead been their Achilles heel. Sunil Kumar, Parvesh Bhainswal and Girish Maruti Ernak need to step up their game in the upcoming games.

Tamil Thalaivas vs Gujarat Giants head-to-head

The Tamil Thalaivas and Gujarat Giants’ head-to-head series is tied at 2-2.

Match 67: Bengaluru Bulls vs Bengal Warriors

The Bengaluru Bulls succumbed to a 38-31 loss in their previous outing against the Patna Pirates. Pawan Sehrawat had a tremendous first half and he finished the game with a Super 10. But the rest of the raiding unit had a rough night, as they combined for just seven points, two of which were bonuses allowed to the last man on the mat. Mahender Singh and Saurabh Nandal had great outings, as both players scored six tackle points. Coach Randhir Singh Sehrawat will want his team to put this loss in the rear-view mirror as quickly as possible, but he will also expect better performances from raiders Bharat and Chandran Ranjit, who combined for just two raid points against the Pirates.

Bengal Warriors skipper Maninder Singh came to his team’s rescue again, scoring 10 of their 16 raid points in a narrow 28-27 win against the Telugu Titans. The raider has scored 39 points in his last three matches and has been the primary reason for their three-game unbeaten run. But the over-reliance on Maninder could backfire for the Warriors. The rest of the team have struggled for form, especially their defence, which is averaging only 8.45 tackle points per game, ranking 11th in the league. Statistically, the Bulls have the most potent raiding unit in the league. If the defence fails to keep Bengaluru’s raiders in check, their recent resurgence could come to a crashing halt on Thursday.

Bengaluru Bulls vs Bengal Warriors head-to-head

The Bengaluru Bulls have won nine and lost eight of their 17 matches against the Bengal Warriors. Their ninth win came earlier this season, when they beat the Warriors 36-35.

PKL Schedule for Thursday, January 20
Match 66: Tamil Thalaivas vs Gujarat Giants, 7:30 PM IST

Match 67: Bengaluru Bulls vs Bengal Warriors, 8:30 PM IST

Where to watch vivo Pro Kabaddi live?
Catch all the LIVE action from vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 8 on the Star Sports Network and LIVE streaming on Disney+Hotstar.

 

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