Puneri Paltan have come a long way since finishing the first two seasons of PKL as the wooden spooners. Having reached the semi-finals in each of the last two seasons, Pune will now look to banish their demons on the big stage as they seek to get their hands on the coveted trophy for the first time.
Performance last year
Last year Pune made it to the semifinals for the second year in a row, but they went down 33-37 to Patna Pirates in a closely fought encounter. However, they did manage to beat Telugu Titans 40-35 in the playoff encounter to secure the third place.
Prior to this year’s auction, the Pune team management made the big call of retaining their all rounder Deepak Niwas Hooda, who has been in fine form over the last two seasons. Pune then picked up another all rounder in Sandeep Narwal for Rs. 66 lakhs. In his 62 PKL matches so far, the 24-year-old has managed 332 points which include 171 raid points and 161 defence points. Further, in a bid to add some experience to their side. Pune also bought 43-year old defender Dharmaraj Cheralathan and raider Rajesh Mondal, both of whom won the title last year with Patna Pirates.
Season V Squad:
Raiders- Akshay Jadhav, Monu, More GB, Rajesh Mondal, Rohit Kumar Choudhary, Suresh Kumar, and Umesh Mhatre.
Defenders- Dharamraj Cheralathan, Girish Ernak, Ravi Kumar, Rinku Narwal, Vikash Khatri, and Ziaur Rahman.
All rounders- Deepak Hooda, Narender Hooda, Sandeep Narwal, and Takamitsu Kono.
The Pune management has shown their faith in the youngster by retaining him ahead of big names such as Manjeet Chhillar and Ajay Thakur. And that itself is a testament to the 23-year-old’s ability. In 62 PKL games so far, Hooda has accumulated 391 points which include 342 raid points and 49 defence points. Furthermore, he was also handed the team’s captaincy and will be looking to lead his team from the front.
A veteran in every sense of the word, the 43-year-old was brought by the Pune franchise to add some much-needed experience to the side. In 59 PKL games so far, Cheralathan has racked up 191 points in total which includes 151 defence points and 40 raid points. Further, given the kind of experience he possesses, Cheralathan will be a key member of Pune’s defence along with Girish Ernak.
While some other teams depend on their raiders to get them the majority of their points, this is not the case for Pune. With the likes of Cheralathan, Girish Ernak, Sandeep Narwal, Ravi Kumar and Ziaur Rahmanin in their ranks, Pune inarguably has one of the best defences in the league and this is undoubtedly their biggest strength. While Cheralathan and Sandeep can play both as covers and corners, skipper Deepak can line-up as cover.
Having made the semifinals in each of the last two seasons, Pune
In conclusion, it can be said that having fallen at the semi-final stage in each of the last two seasons, Pune know what disappointment feels like. But that should also give them all the motivation they need as they bid to win their first ever PKL title this season.
28 Jul 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS U MUMBA
4 Aug 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS DABANG DELHI K.C.
10 Aug 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS JAIPUR PINK PANTHERS
15 Aug 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS BENGALURU BULLS
20 Aug 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS PATNA PIRATES
22 Aug 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS GUJRAT FORTUNE GAINTS
26 Aug 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS U MUMBA
7 Sep 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS TELUGU TITANS
10 Sep 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS BENGALURU BULLS
13 Sep 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS HARYANA STEELERS
19 Sep 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS HARYANA STEELERS
23 Sep 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS DABANG DELHI K.C.
29 Sep 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS TAMIL THALAIVAS
30 Sep 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS UP YODDHA
8 Oct 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS JAIPUR PINK PANTHERS
13 Oct 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS GUJRAT FORTUNE GAINTS
14 Oct 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS U MUMBA
15 Oct 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS DABANG DELHI K.C.
17 Oct 2017 20:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS HARYANA STEELERS
18 Oct 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS JAIPUR PINK PANTHERS
20 Oct 2017 21:00 PUNERI PALTAN VS GUJRAT FORTUNE GIANTS
You can watch the live stream here
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