All-Time Best Playing 7 of The Tamil Thalaivas: A Team filled With Stars, But No Play-Offs Appearance Yet!
Tamil Thalaivas joined the Pro Kabaddi League in season five, along with UP Yoddha, Gujarat Fortune Giants, and Haryana Steelers. While the Chennai-based franchise has had a solid lineup every year, the team has struggled to win matches. The raiding and the defensive unit has rarely functioned as a well-oiled unit for the Tamil Thalaivas.
They finished at the last position of Zone B when the league was played under the zonal format, while last year when 12 teams competed in one group only, the Thalaivas still finished last with only 37 points in 22 matches. The fans have passionately supported their team in Chennai. However, the Tamil Thalaivas have let the fans down with their performance in PKL so far.
Ajay Thakur has been the face of the franchise since its inception. The running hand touch specialist has scored 474 raid points in three seasons for Tamil Thalaivas. He was phenomenal for Tamil Thalaivas in the first two seasons, but he did not get enough support from the other players. In season seven, the team management formed a magnificent group of players. However, Thakur’s form witnessed a slump as he only managed 58 points in 13 matches.
The second top pick for Tamil Thalaivas’ all-time Pro Kabaddi League seven is Amit Hooda. The current Jaipur Pink Panthers player was the most successful defender for Tamil Thalaivas in its first two seasons. He scored 110 tackle points for the team, including six High 5s.
Even though Rahul Chaudhari looked like a shadow of his former self in Pro Kabaddi League Season 7, he still managed to attain the 11th position on the raiders’ leaderboard. Rahul scored 130 raid points for Tamil Thalaivas and was their most successful raider of the last season.
The third raider’s spot will be a toss-up between V. Ajith Kumar and K Prapanjan. Both the youngsters impressed a lot while playing the third raider’s role. Ajith scored 121 raid points in 19 matches for Tamil Thalaivas in season seven, whereas K Prapanjan aggregated 123 raid points in 22 games. Ajith scored more Super 10s than Prapanjan. His average raid points/match was much better, so he takes the third raider’s spot in this all-time seven.
There is not much competition for the other spots on the team. Talking about the cover positions, Darshan J and Manjeet Chhillar will take up the right and the left covers. Darshan was a breakout star for Tamil Thalaivas in season five, with 40 tackle points in 20 games. He also scored a High 5 for the team. No other defender fared so well as Darshan at the right cover position for Tamil Thalaivas. Unfortunately, Darshan J could not continue his form in the subsequent season as his tally of six tackle points in nine games led to his ouster from the franchise.
Manjeet Chhillar has been one of the best all-rounders in kabaddi history. He was the cornerstone of Bengaluru Bulls in the first few seasons, but unfortunately, injury issues derailed his career. Playing for Tamil Thalaivas in season six, Manjeet finished in the Top 10 of the defenders’ leaderboard with 59 tackle points to his name.
It seemed like Chhillar found his mojo back after reuniting with Ajay Thakur. However, in the previous edition of PKL, Manjeet could score mere 37 tackle points in 15 matches. He recorded the lowest tackle strike rate of his career as only 45.67% of his tackle attempts were successful. Also, his average raid points per match were only 0.26 compared to his career average of 2.07. Still, no other all-rounder has contributed so much to Tamil Thalaivas in the last three years.
Finally, the left corner position in the all-time seven is up for grabs, and the top candidate for that spot is C Arun. Amit Hooda performed brilliantly at the right corner position, and Arun backed him sometimes with his tackles on the left side of the court.
Arun played two seasons for Tamil Thalaivas. He aggregated 35 tackle points in 20 matches in the first season, including one High five and five super tackles. The numbers went down considerably in season six as he could score only eight points in 16 matches. Also, his tackle strike rate was only 22.22%. The other left corner defenders used by Tamil Thalaivas did not perform up to the mark as well.
Playing Seven Stats for Tamil Thalaivas
Left Corner - C Arun
Matches - 36, Tackle Points - 44
Left In - Rahul Chaudhari
Matches - 22, Raid Points - 130
Left Cover - Manjeet Chhillar
Matches - 34, Tackle Points - 96
Center - Ajay Thakur
Matches - 57, Raid Points - 474
Right Cover - Darshan J
Matches - 29, Tackle Points - 46
Right In - V. Ajith Kumar
Matches - 19, Raid Points - 121
Right Corner - Amit Hooda
Matches - 40, Tackle Points - 110
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