PWL: MP Yodha eyes semifinal berth

Debutant MP Yodha will look to cement its place in the semifinal with a win over UP Dangal when it clashes in the Pro Wrestling League (PWL) Season-4 at the Gautam Buddha University Indoor Stadium in Greater Noida on Friday.

MP Yodha will rely heavily on Pooja Dhanda.   -  Special Arrangement

Debutant MP Yodha will look to cement its place in the semifinal with a win over UP Dangal when it clashes in the Pro Wrestling League (PWL) Season-4 at the Gautam Buddha University Indoor Stadium in Greater Noida on Friday. After two consecutive defeats, UP Dangal came back strongly against Mumbai Maharathi to put its campaign back on track and it will look to brighten its chances by turning the tables on the debutant.

MP Yodha, with two wins and two loss, needs a win to book its berth in the semis, whereas a defeat against UP would make it wait for the outcome of the other matches in the league. For UP to make it to the semis, it has to win its remaining two bouts against MP and defending champions Punjab Royals.

READ: Vinesh Phogat helps Mumbai Maharathi down Haryana Hammers

Some of the key clashes in this tie will be seen in the men’s 74kg, and women’s 57 and 62kg categories. In the men's 74kg category UP Dangal's Jitender, who has just returned after a training stint in Georgia, will taken on Vasil Mikhaillov who had a narrow escape against Praveen Rana in the previous bout. Jitender on the other hand defeated the giant-killer Sachin Rathi in an one-sided encounter. Expect a cracker of a contest in the women's 57kg category too where world championships silver medalist Pooja Dhanda will take on an in-form Sarita Maan, who has already caused two upsets this season. It is an excellent opportunity for Sarita to show that she also a force to reckon in women's wrestling.

Another tough contest can be expected in the women’s 62kg category where India’s only Asian Championships gold medalist Navjot Kaur is up against European Championships bronze medal winner Elise Manolova.

UP Dangal’s co-owner Sunny Katiyal said: “This is a do-or-die match for us and I am pretty confident that my team will make it to the semis by winning the remaining two bouts.”

The MP coach Jagminder said: “We want to show the same zeal and energy we showed in our two wins this season. The defeats are definitely eyeopeners and we have learnt a lot from those defeats. But, even though our team lost, I was very impressed with the way my team played.”

THE SQUADS

MP Yodha: Ritu Phogat (53 Kg), Sandeep Tomar (57 Kg), Pooja Dhanda (57 Kg), Elise Manolova (62 Kg), Haji Aliyev (65 Kg), Vasil Mikhaillov (74 Kg), Andrea Carolina (76 Kg), Deepak (86 Kg), Akash Antil (125 Kg).

UP Dangal: Vanesa Kaladzinskaya (53 Kg), Naveen (57 Kg), Sarita (57 Kg), Navjot Kaur (64 Kg), Pankaj Rana (65 Kg), Jitendra (74 Kg), Epp Mae (76 Kg) Irakli Misituri (86 Kg), Giorgi Sakandelidze (125 Kg).

Catch the action live on Sony Six, Sony Ten 3, Sony Liv and Set Max from 7pm.