With heads full of strategies and minds full of confidence, we are all set to hit the mat in the sixth edition of VIVO ProKabaddi and the first hurdle we have ahead is Tamil Thalaivas. Our Yoddha are prepared for the tough task that lies in taming a bunch of experienced riders and defenders as they head to Chennai for their October 8 showdown.

The Raiders:

Rishank Devadiga will not only be our captain, but the anchor in the high-voltage clash. He is one of those few players in our revamped set up who has faced most of the Thalaivas, and that puts a lot of responsibilities on his able shoulders. While UP Yoddha scored a total of 103 points against Tamil Thalaivas in the previous season, Devadiga contributed with 33 of them, being the most successful Yoddha in one of the clashes. Devadiga will galvanise the raiders, and he will find support in the likes of Prashanth Kumar Rai and Shrikant Jadhav. Rai has been one of the most consistent raiders, with an immensely successful previous season. He gathered 78 points in PKL 2017 with a success rate of 41.61 per cent in his raids and over 4 points per raid. Jadhav shares similar success story from his outings in PKL season 5, scoring 86 raid points with success rate of 41.17 per cent and over 4.5 points per raid. Rohit Kumar Choudary, Bhanu Pratap Tomar and Azad Singh complete the squad.

The Defenders:

The secret to a good defense is the rhythm and understanding of the defenders and Jeeva Kumar is the binding agent in our camp. Jeeva’s experience mixed with the energy of our young defenders create UP Yoddha’s wall of defense – one that is hard to invade. Sachin Kumar, Vishav Chaudhary, Nitesh Kumar can be the key players guiding the likes of Nitin Mavi, Amit and Pankaj to create a top-class chain of defenders who will look to seize every opportunity to stop the stalwarts and their star raider, Ajay Thakur!

The All-rounders:

The jack of all trades, our all-rounders, are equally talented if not more, than the rest of the squad. Sagar Krishna, who has been one of the most successful Yoddha in the previous season, will be trusted to pull off a magnificent show while Arkam Shaikh, Narender and Ashish Nagar complete the contingent.

Foreign Connect:

To take the team one-step further towards victory, we have Seong Ryol Kim and Sulieman Kabir. While the Korean has ample experience of the ProKabaddi setup and can be one to cause major damage to the opponent, Bangladesh’s Kabir has had a successful year on Kabaddi front and is expected to carry his form into ProKabaddi.

Head to Head:

UP Yoddha 1 – 1 Tamil Thalaivas [Tie]