It took some time for U Mumba to find its feet in PKL 2019. The side struggled to put two consecutive wins together till late in the tournament. The issues in the raiding department were clear for everyone to see and the defense was also struggling a bit.
Since then, though, Fazel Atrachali has roared into his best form and is in the race to be the lead tackle point scorer for the entire PKL. Abhishek Singh has also understood what is needed from him as the lead raider and is performing very well.
Most importantly, U Mumba has a run of four victories leading up to the playoffs and is peaking at just the right time.
We think the defense of Fazel Atrachali, Surinder Singh, and Sandeep Narwal against the likes of Vikash Kandola is where this match is going to be won or lost. U Mumba will be pleased to see Sandeep Narwal coming into this best form and should try and utilize him to shake things up if the match is slipping away.
The Haryana Steelers started the PKL a bit slowly, then peaked in the middle, and are now struggling for form once again. There is no doubt about the kind of talent that the Haryana Steelers possess but whether or not those players are going to be able to deliver when the crunch situation arrives is the question.
We have seen Vikash Kandola run rings around defenders in this season already. He is one of the most talented raiders going around and will have to take the responsibility of leading the Haryana Steelers in this match.
He will be supported by Prashant Kumar Rai and Vinay but they are support raiders at best.
The defense is led by Dharmaraj Cherlathan who has enough experience to know what is required but it is Sunil who has emerged as the most valuable defender. He has been a revelation for the Haryana Steelers this season and has ensured that they don’t give up any easy points.
If Sunil, Vikas Kale, Ravi Kumar, and Dharmraj Cherlathan are able to exploit the weaknesses in the U Mumba offense, then this match could be theirs for the taking.
Both these teams are very strong defensive teams and so we could have a low-scoring match on our hands. Fazel Atrachali is leading the tackle points tally with 78 to his name followed by Sandeep Narwal with 51 and Surinder Singh with 48 in the U Mumba camp.
Sunil has 55 tackle points, Ravi Kumar 53, and Dharmraj Cherlathan 42 tackle points to give the Haryana Steelers a strong defense as well.
We think U Mumba has the advantage of better form coming into this match. Its defense is slightly stronger and should be able to nullify the advantage that Haryana has in the offense.
Bet on U Mumba to win.