Many young players make the cut to the latest starting XI.
The Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) season 9 is approaching its business end with only seven matches left in the group stages. Five teams have made it to the playoffs, with Tamil Thalaivas reaching the knockout stage for the first time.
Tamil Thalaivas were the only PKL team not to qualify for the playoffs previously and have achieved the feat successfully this season. The fight for the sixth position is intense with Dabang Delhi KC holding a firm advantage.
Here is Khel Now’s Team of the Week for PKL Season 9.
Left-Corner – Mohammadreza Chiyaneh (Patna Pirates)
The left-corner Iranian currently leads the tackle points list with 77 points just a point ahead of Ankush. In the last three matches, Chiyaneh has scored 12 tackle points at an average of four tackle points per match. With a lack of support from other defenders, Patna Pirates, who were the runners-up in the last season, failed to qualify for the playoffs.
Right-Corner – Monu Hooda (Haryana Steelers)
The right-corner defender replaced the young Iranian Bastami and since then has been performing well. Monu Hooda has been good in the right corner position scoring a high-five in his return. Haryana Steelers still has a slight chance of qualifying and Monu will play an important role.
Left Cover – Sunil Kumar (Jaipur Pink Panthers)
The captain of Jaipur Pink Panthers has led the side extremely well taking them to the playoffs for the first time in three years. Apart from leading the side, Sunil has been tremendous in his defensive duties as well scoring 58 tackle points and is in the top five of the tackle points list. Sunil Kumar will play a vital role in the playoffs as many in the squad will be playing in the playoffs for the first time.
PKL 9 Team of the Week for Gameweek 9
Right Cover – Jaideep Dahiya (Haryana Steelers)
Jaideep has been one of the bright spots in the defence for the Haryana Steelers this season. The left-cover defender is playing in just his second season and has scored close to 60 points in both seasons. He has scored 53 tackle points in season 9 and is the only player to feature in the top 10 tackle points list from Haryana Steelers.
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Left In – Ajinkya Pawar (Tamil Thalaivas)
Aijnkya Pawar scored a massive twenty points against Telugu Titans and his five-point raid in the middle helped Tamil Thalaivas beat Titans with a healthy lead. Apart from supporting Narender Kandola in raiding Pawar has also played an important role in defence when required. He has led the team well in the absence of Sagar progressing to the playoffs.
Right In – Akash Shinde (Puneri Paltan)
Akash Shinde took up the additional responsibility as the primary raider for Puneri Paltan and scored back-to-back super 10s. Monu Goyat and Aslam Inamdar did not play in the last few games due to injury and it was the combo of Akash and Pankaj Mohite who performed the raiding duties. In the 20 matches played Akash has scored 131 raid points out of which 29 came from the last two matches.
Centre – Ajith Kumar (Jaipur Pink Panthers)
Ajith Kumar has peaked at the right time in the fag end of the league stages. Coach Sanjeev Baliyan did not have many options in the raiding to help Arjun Deshwal who was single-handedly leading the side. In the last two matches Ajith has scored back-to-back super 10s and has regained back his original form.
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