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Kabaddi

PKL 2021: Bengal Warriors - Preview, Squad, Expected 7, Schedule

Does the Bengal Warriors have it in them to become only the second team to defend their PKL title?

PKL 2021: Bengal Warriors - Preview, Squad, Expected 7, Schedule
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Bengal Warriors after clinching their first-ever Pro Kabaddi title (Source: PKL)

By

Vaibhav Borse

Updated: 14 Dec 2021 7:05 AM GMT

The Bengal Warriors have established themselves as one of the most stable teams in the past few seasons. Their Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) journey started in a horrific way as they managed to qualify for playoffs just once in the first four seasons.

Then the 12-team format and arrival of Maninder Singh changed the fortunes of Tigers. And finally, the Warriors achieved their ultimate goal for which they were contesting hard since in the previous season. Let's see how the Bengal Warriors' camp is lined up for PKL season eight.


Room to level up

Bengal made some surprising releases before the auctions instead of retaining their core. Eventually, the consequences of auctions went in the Bengal's way wholeheartedly. Gaffer BC Ramesh added many young guns to the roster cutting off some aged faces. The new arrivals include some really big names like Rishank Devadiga, Abozar Mighani, Sachin Vittala etc.

The Royal Invaders

Maninder Singh is the most valuable player in the history of the Bengal Warriors. The raiding maestro has been carrying the Bengal attack since his arrival and is ready to lead the invasion for yet another season. There will be a tough competition between Bengal's other raiders to accommodate Maninder in Starting7.

While Ravindra Kumawat, Sukesh Hegde, Sumit Malik and Akash Pikalmunde will be battling each other for the third raider position. This competition is a very good sign for coach BC Ramesh and depicts the depth of Bengal's raiding unit.

Warriors at the Guard

Bengal Warriors' decision to release the sturdy right corner Baldev Singh breaking the Rinku-Baldev duo. Eventually, the Tigers replaced their right corner commodity with Iranian Beast Abozar Mighani. Meanwhile, Kannadiga coach BC Ramesh brought Karnataka-based left corner Sachin Vittala as a backup for both. Southern dashers Darshan J and Vijin Thangadurai are also very good right-cover options to accompany Moein Nabibakhsh.

The Moein Nabibakhsh Supremacy

Mohammad Esmaeil aka Moein Nabibakhsh features in the grade of most valuable foreigners in the Pro Kabaddi right now. Moein led Bengal Warriors to glory in knockout games in the absence of their star raider Maninder Singh. The 30-year-old Iranian all-rounder was part of the Asian Games gold medal-winning Iran and All-Star match-winning World 7 side.

Nabibakhsh proved his versatile capabilities last season by scoring 92 raid and 30 tackle points in 22 games. He scored game-changing 10 points to snatch the Pro Kabaddi title from the tight grip of Dabang Delhi. Moein Nabibakhsh's significance will determine the fortunes of Warriors for the upcoming season beyond doubt.

Bengal Warriors expected starting 7

Maninder Singh (Raider) (Captain)

Rishank Devadiga (Raider)

Sukesh Hegde (Raider)

Moein Nabibakhsh (All-Rounder)

Darshan J (Right Cover)

Rinku Narwal (Left Corner)

Abozar Mighani (Right Corner)

Announced fixtures

UP Yoddha - 22 December 2021

Gujarat Giants - 24 December 2021

Bengaluru Bulls - 26 December 2021

Dabang Delhi KC - 29 December 2021

Patna Pirates - 31 December 2021

Jaipur Pink Panthers - 3 January 2022

Haryana Steelers - 7 January 2022

Puneri Paltan - 9 January 2022

Tamil Thalaivas - 13 January 2022

U Mumba - 15 January 2022

Telugu Titans - 17 January 2022

Squad

Raiders- Maninder Singh, Rishank Devadiga, Sukesh Hegde, Ravindra Kumawat, Akash Pikalmunde, Anand V, Sumit Malik

All Rounders- Moein Nabibakhsh, Manoj Gowda, Rohit

Defenders- Abozar Mighani, Rinku Narwal, Sachin Vittala, Darshan J, Vijin Thangadurai, Rohit Banne, Parveen, Amit

(Ran Singh and Vishal Mane are travelling with Bengal Warriors as 'Corona contingency replacements')


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