A 45-27 thrashing to the Haryana Steelers was the last match the Puneri Paltans played and that performance gave an indication of why this side is being billed as potential winners this season. Nitin Tomar is playing brilliantly this season and continued that form in the last game as well.
He finished with another 10 points to his tally to now have a total of 52 in the tournament so far. Tomar has the joint second most raid points in the tournament and the second most successful raids as well. The fact that he is very well supported by players like Rajesh Mondal, Akshay Jadhav and a defense that just does not give anything up makes this team all the more dangerous.
Speaking of the defense, we believe that the Puneri Paltan defense is easily among the best, if not the best this season. Girish Maruti Ernak has done a stellar job of marshaling his troops on the mat while defending and is ensuring that Puneri Paltan is going to be a difficult side to beat even if it has a poor raiding day.
The Gujarat Fortunegiants had an excellent last season when they made it to the final. The core of that team is still together but the results have not gone the teams way so far. Before the start of the tournament, the team management would have been happy to start against Dabang Delhi K.C. and the Haryana Steelers. Now, though, Gujarat has tied with Delhi and become the only team in the tournament to lose to Haryana so far.
That is not something that will fill the side or its supporters with confidence.
Players such as Sunil Kumar will have a big role to play in trying to contain the Puneri Paltan offense. Scoring points on the offense side will also be very important to put the Puneri Paltan under pressure and that is where K. Prapanjan and Sachin should shine.
The Gujarat Fortunegiants have the side to be able to give the Puneri Paltan a real tough fight but it will take something really special to be able to beat them.
Historically, the record between these two teams is completely in favor of the Gujarat Fortunegiants. Three matches and three wins for the Gujarat side makes them favorites for this game if you just look from a historical perspective.
Current, form, though, is completely in favor of Puneri Paltan.
Puneri Paltan is riding a wave at the moment thanks largely to form of Nitin Tomar. They are also going to be playing at home and can be buoyed by home support. We think they should be able to win this match and get their first-ever victory against the Gujarat Fortunegiants.
Back the Puneri Paltan to win.