PKL to get a new champion
If Dabang Delhi wins this time, Vishal Mane would be the first player in PKL history to be a part of 3 different winning teams (Season 2 with U Mumba, Season 5 with Patna Pirates and Season 7 with Dabang Delhi).
Sukesh Hegde ended up as the runner-up in PKL 5 with Gujarat Fortunegiants and K Prapanjan ended up as runner-up with Gujarat Fortunegiants in PKL 6. Both these players are yet to lift the PKL title in their career.
Jeeva Kumar will be playing in his 4th final (won 1, lost 2). All his previous finals were with U Mumba (PKL 1-3).
Overall, Dabang Delhi and Bengal Warriors have met on 14 occasions and both the teams have registered 6 wins each while two games ended in a tie. Interestingly, Bengal is the only team this season that Delhi was not able to beat. The first game ended in a tie while Bengal won the second match by a margin of 9 points.
Prapanjan shined for Bengal in 1st league tie against Delhi
In the first, Prapanjan had a SUPER 10 for Bengal as their captain Maninder Singh was taken off at half-time after a poor performance (3 raid points). Jeeva Kumar scored 4 tackle points and Rinku Narwal scored 3 tackle points for Bengal.
Naveen Kumar had 11 raid points for Delhi and was well supported by Chandran Ranjit who had 6 raid points. Joginder Narwal was Delhi’s best defender with 4 tackle points.
Maninder was brilliant in the 2nd league match Vs Delhi
In the second match, Maninder Singh was brilliant from the start and finished the game with 13 raid points for Warriors. Sukesh Hegde and Mohammad Nabibakhsh also chipped in with 7 and 5 raid points respectively. However, Maninder, who sustained in this very match and sitting on the bench ever since has, might miss the most-important final as well.
Bengal won’t miss Maninder that bad
But Bengal Warriors are a potent raid unit with a great raiding depth that is capable of competing even without the absence of their lead raider Maninder Singh. The share of raid points doesn’t entirely depend on Maninder. While Maninder has contributed to 42% of the team’s raid points, the support raiders in Prapanjan, Nabibakhsh and Sukesh Hegde have contributed 49%.
Experience Matters! Bengal Raiders Vs Delhi Defenders
Dabang and Warriors were the front-runners in the raiding department have reached the final this season. In terms of raiding accuracy, Bengal Warriors have the least failed raid % (19.5%) and Dabang Delhi has the 2nd lowest failed raid % (20.5%).
All of Bengal’s raid trio Sukesh Hegde (99), K Prapanjan (81) and Maninder Singh (79) have played 75+ matches in PKL and are very experienced. Barring Jeeva Kumar (121), none of their defenders boasts a similar experience.
For Delhi, it’s the opposite. Their defence trio, comprising Vishal Mane (126), Ravinder Pahal (111) and Joginder Narwal (81), have played 75+ PKL matches whereas their raid unit barring Meraj Sheykh (97) are fairly inexperienced.
Dabang Delhi Starting 7: Ravinder Pahal (D), Vijay (All-rounder), Vishal Mane (D), Naveen Kumar (R), Anil Kumar (D), Chandran Ranjit (R), Joginder Narwal (D).
Bengal Warriors Starting 7: Baldev Singh (D), Mohammed Nabibakhsh (A), Mayur Shivtarkar (A), Maninder Singh / Sukesh Hegde (R), Jeeva Kumar (D), K Prapanjan (R), Rinku Narwal (D).
MyDream11: Naveen Kumar (R), Chandran Ranjit (R), Joginder Narwal (D), Baldev Singh (D), Jeeva Kumar (D), K Prapanjan (R), Rinku Narwal (D).