Puneri Paltan and Jaipur Pink Panthers are into the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL 9) playoffs, Tamil Thalaivas have lost another captain to injury and Bengaluru Bulls' Bharat Hooda produced one of the best raiding performances of the season.
Here are the highlights of week eight of PKL 9, in numbers -
Tamil Thalaivas have lost not one, but two of their captains to injuries. Pawan Sehrawat's injury, - the team's original captain - came as a big blow but stand-in skipper Sagar Rathee also hurt his knee last week. Sources say Sagar might not recover in time for the playoffs, should Tamil Thalaivas make their debut in the knockout stages.
Five raiders - Arjun Deshwal (242 points, Jaipur Pink Panthers), Bharat Hooda (229 points, Bengaluru Bulls), Naveen Kumar (209 points, Dabang Delhi), Maninder Singh (208 points, Bengal Warriors) and Narender Kandola (200, Tamil Thalaivas) - have scored more than 200 raid points in PKL 9. And they still have three games [Maninder has four] to play. For context, only four raiders went past 200 raid points last season.
Bharat Hooda scored 23 raid points against Dabang Delhi to engineer Bengaluru Bulls' 52-49 win. Delhi led 25-16 at halftime but Bharat went berserk in the second half to further better the Bulls' playoff chances
Jaipur Pink Panthers and Puneri Paltan are both locked on 69 points and have qualified for the PKL 9 playoffs. Puneri Paltan were the first team to progress to the knockouts but have since been pipped to the top spot by the Panthers, owing to the latter's superior score difference.
Only one man is ruling the tackle points chart and it's Jaipur Pink Panthers' Ankush, their find of the season. The left corner has been in sublime form and has 71 tackle points, including a league-high six High 5s. Ankush has consistently led the standings this season and has been the Panthers' key man, along with Arjun Deshwal.
A week after his incredible feat of bagging 16 tackle points in a single game, Mohammadreza Shadloui finds himself with another record to his name as he becomes the fastest to 150 tackle points. The Iranian has 65 tackle points in 16 games - the second-most in PKL 9.
Sandeep Narwal made a comeback to PKL when he played for UP Yoddhas against Patna Pirates last week. It marked his 150th PKL game.
Dekho kaun aaya 👀
- ProKabaddi (@ProKabaddi) November 26, 2022
Arjun Deshwal became the fastest to 200 raid points in PKL 9 last week. The Jaipur Pink Panthers raider has powered his team to the top of the table with nine successive Super 10s. Arjun is the season's leading raider with 242 points in 19 matches.
Vikash Kandola crossed the 700 raid point mark earlier this week and became only the ninth player to do so. Vikash, who was roped in for ₹1.7 crore by Bengaluru Bulls, has had a poor campaign, averaging just 5.4 raid points per game.
Maninder Singh became the second player in PKL history to cross the 1200 raid points. The Bengal Warriors captain is among the most consistent players in the League, having crossed the 1000 rad point mark earlier in the season. Maninder is second only to Pardeep Narwal, who is on course to go past 1600 raid points.