For a few seasons now, Puneri has been winning the auctions and losing the matches. With multiple reports calling them a team to watch out for, however other than seasons 4 and 5, they have flattered to deceive. Last season they were one of the only teams to keep Pawan Sehrawat silent, but then lost to a hapless Tamil Thalaivas! Nitin Tomar has always delivered for them when he has stayed injury-free. However, they haven't been able to retain Tomar who fell from category A to category B. Tomar and young Services raider Manjeet have to definitely be their likely FBM candidates.
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Pune has got one brilliant steal by retaining Pankaj Mohite - the lanky boy who dubkis his way through the defense. Given enough raiding opportunities, Pankaj is likely to score over 200 points in a season. They have also retained two more Maharashtrians to fill the cover positions in Balasaheb and Sanket Sawant. They have retained Pawan Kadiyan at a mere 13 Lakhs. When Pawan is in his element he can rip apart any defense like he did to Northern Railways in Gotegaon earlier this year.
The defense looked pretty good last season when they were good. Girish’s struggles in the left corner really impacted their team balance and they are likely to plug that hole in this auction. Retaining Hadi and Releasing Shubham Shinde is a big surprise, but Hadi is a reliable right corner. Puneri have invested in their youth squad Yuva Paltan and expect them to surprise us with some good NYPs.
Expect strong bidding for a left corner from this Anup Kumar-led outfit. Will we see the SuMo combination back together again?
Purse left: 363 Lakhs for at least 13 players
Retained Players :
1. Raider Pankaj Mohite (118 points, 25 Lakhs)
Likely FBM Candidates :
1. Raider, Nitin Tomar (142 points)
2. Raider, Manjeet (128 points)