PKL 2017 | Team Preview : Bengaluru Bulls

no photo
 |

PKL 2017 | Team Preview : Bengaluru Bulls

no photo

Rohit George

07/25/2017

Bengaluru Bulls are owned by the Kosmik Global Media Group and include stars like Rohit Kumar and Ajay Kumar in their ranks. Though the Bangalore franchise has had a mixed journey over the last four years, they will aim to win their first title at PKL season five. Here's a preview of the team.

Bengaluru finished the inaugural season in fourth place and managed to go one better in the second season, but they followed those up with dismal outings in the third and fourth seasons of the competition, finishing in the 7th and 6th positions respectively. Now, heading into the fifth season of the event, Bengaluru will aim to lift their first PKL title.

Last season finish

Last season Bengaluru Bulls failed to hit their stride at any point as they won only 5 of their fourteen matches in the league stage and that eventually condemned them to a disappointing sixth place finish.

Bengaluru at the 2017 PKL auction

Bengaluru did manage to raise a few eyebrows with their choices at this year’s  player auction. While most people were expecting the side to retain the services of Mohit Chillar, they chose to retain all-rounder Ashish Kumar instead. Having let Chillar go, Bengaluru picked up raider Rohit Kumar on the first day of the auction for a whopping Rs. 81 lakhs. They followed it up by picking up another raider in Ajay Kumar for 48.5 lakhs and a defender in Ravinder Pahal for 50 lakhs.

Squad for PKL Season V 

Defenders –  Ravinder Pahal, Sachin Kumar, Navjot Singh, Kuldeep Singh, Mahender Singh

Raiders – Rohit Kumar, Ajay Kumar, Sumit Singh, Harish Naik, Sinotharan Kanesharajah, Gurvinder Singh, Rohit, Sunil Jaipal

All Rounders – Sanjay Shrestha, Ashish Kumar, Ankit Sangwan, Amit, Preetam Chhillar

Key Players

Rohit Kumar - The 27-year-old was inarguably Bengaluru’s biggest purchase at this year’s auction. Having been bought as one of the most expensive players at this year’s auction, Rohit Kumar will look to repay the faith with his performances in the tournament. The fact that he has been named the captain of the side will only add to the pressure of the price tag. Rohit will, however, will take encouragement from the fact that he was adjudged the Most Valuable Player for the third edition of the tournament when he helped his former team Patna Pirates to the title, and his presence is certain to add a winning mentality to the side.

Ajay Kumar- Ajay Kumar is the other star raider in the Bengaluru ranks, and together with Rohit Kumar, the collective performances of the duo will go a long way in determining Bengaluru’s fortunes this season. In the 15 PKL matches he has played so far, Ajay has racked up 61 raid points at an average of over four points per game. 

Ravindra Pahal- The 27-year-old is another PKL veteran with 48 games under his belt. Within that period, Pahal has amassed 164 points in total including 152 defence points. In the process, he has made the right corner defender’s spot his own and once again he will be looking to give opposition raiders a tough time, especially with his signature move, the ankle hold.

Strengths

Heading into PKL season 5, Bengaluru have managed a fine balance in their side, with the experience of Preetam Chhillar and Gurvinder Singh on one hand, and the exuberance of  Sinthoran Kanesharajha and Ajay Kumar on the other. But it is not by chance that Bengaluru have found such a balance in their side. Their coach, Randhir Singh, revealed that Bengaluru had planned their strategy 15 days before the auction and it has clearly made a difference to their selections. 

Speaking of the quality of players his side now has, Randhir added, "Rohit Kumar and Ajay Kumar are among the top eight raiders in the country. Ajay was one of the best players in the Federation Cup this year. Two of our all-rounders have won 'Best Player' awards in regional tournaments this year. Sachin Kumar, our left corner is a national gold medallist. We planned to have two players for each position,” as quoted by TOI. It is this combination of squad balance and squad depth that will be Bengaluru’s biggest strength at this year’s PKL.

Weaknesses

Bengaluru has been dealt a blow even before the start of this season’s PKL when they learnt that their home matches would not be held at the Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru due to the lack of necessary permissions and would be moved to Nagpur instead. Following this, Bengaluru will have to do without their boisterous home support and this might just make a big difference to their performances this season. Further, letting Mohit Chillar go was a big decision and it might come back to haunt Bengaluru this season

To conclude, on paper, Bengaluru have one of the most talented and capable sides of the tournament and they can undoubtedly go on to win the tournament, but the onus is on the team and the management to find the perfect match day squad and be consistent in their performances throughout the tournament over the next three months. However, if Bengaluru do manage to pull that off, there's little anyone can do to stop their march to the title.

Fixtures

30th July     17:30          Telugu Titans vs Bengaluru Bulls

4th August. 16:30           Bengaluru Bulls vs Tamil Thalaivas

5th August 17:30            Bengaluru Bulls vs UP Yoddha

6th August 17:30            Bengaluru Bulls vs Patna Pirates

8th August. 17:30           Bengaluru Bulls vs Telugu Titans

9th August. 16:30           Bengaluru Bulls vs Bengal Warriors

10th August. 17:30         Bengaluru Bulls vs Tamil Thalaivas

15th August. 17:30         Gujarat FortuneGiants vs Bengaluru Bulls

18th August. 17:30         Bengaluru Bulls vs Jaipur Pink Panthers

27th August. 16:30         Bengal Warriors vs Bengaluru Bulls

29th August. 16:30         Bengaluru Bulls vs UP Yoddha

06th September. 16:30   Dabang Delhi vs Bengaluru Bulls

09th September. 17:30   Haryana Steelers vs Bengaluru Bulls

10th September. 16:30   Bengaluru Bulls vs Puneri Paltan

16th September. 16:30   Bengaluru Bulls vs Telugu Titans

19th September. 17:30   Patna Pirates vs Bengaluru Bulls

23rd September. 16:30   Bengaluru Bulls vs Bengal Warriors

28th September. 16:30   Bengaluru Bulls vs U Mumba

05th October. 16:30       Tamil Thalaivas vs Bengaluru Bulls

15th October. 16:30       Bengaluru Bulls vs UP Yoddha

18th October. 16:30       Patna Pirates vs Bengaluru Bulls

Bengaluru Bulls or Tamil Thalaivas? Who will win?

Presenting Nostragamus, the first ever prediction game that covers the Pro Kabaddi league. Play the PKL challenge and win cash prizes daily!!

Download the app for FREE and get Rs.20 joining BONUS. Join 30,000 other users who win cash by playing NostraGamus. Click here to download the app for FREE on android!

SHOW COMMENTS