The Telugu Titans let go of a winning opportunity in its first home leg match but have since won their next two. It has been refreshing to see a change of attitude in the side’s lead raider, Rahul Chaudhari as he continues to return to his best.
Rahul Chaudhari was dominant in the last match against the Haryana Steelers and absolutely crushed their defense into submission. He has 126 raid points for the season and while we don’t think he is at his best right now, he will be the biggest threat to the U.P Yoddha defense.
Rahul Chaudhari’s recent form has allowed the Telugu Titans to give some breathing room to its stellar defense. Abozar Mohajermighani and Vishal Bhardwaj would much rather be defending a lead rather than trying to pull their team back up from a deficit.
The two corner defenders have been brilliant this entire campaign and would be itching to have a go at one of the weakest offensive units in the PKL.
U.P Yoddha finally won a match in its last outing and that would be some pressure off its back. The side now faces a big challenge to beat the Telugu Titans in front of a highly partisan crowd. Here is the thing, though. We believe that there are some important similarities in the U.P Yoddha side and the Telugu Titans.
U.P Yoddha also has one dominant raider on which it must depend to get most of the raid points. Shrikanth Jadhav is a very talented raider and has 109 points in 17 games. He is going to test the Telugu Titans defense and could make things difficult if he has a great game.
The problem has the lack of support he receives from the others on his side. Similarly, like the Telugu Titans, U.P Yoddha has Nitesh Kumar, a star defender that has made a very good name for himself. Nitesh Kumar will have eyes firmly on Rahul Chaudhari because he knows he can neutralize a large part of the Telugu Titans threat by keeping him quiet.
These two teams played out a tie the last time they met because a lot of their strengths tend to cancel each other out. This match could be closer than it appears.
The Telugu Titans have won just one match out of the five they have played against U.P Yoddha in the PKL over the years. Recent form of the Telugu Titans is slightly better but both sides have been struggling massively off late. We think the market may have over-estimated the Telugu Titans in this contest.
Both of these sides are flawed sides. They have been exposed in this season of the PKL and have been in poor form. They do have some dangerous players that can change things around and win them the game on the day.
We think there is a definite opportunity to back the upset in this one.
Back U.P Yoddha to win.