Gujarat Giants have always been a defense-heavy team since the time they stepped their foot into Pro Kabaddi League. That is mainly because of the two cover defenders who are arguably the best cover defenders in the country- Sunil Kumar and Parvesh Bhainswal. This year again the Sunil and Parvesh 'Jodi' got retained along with two corner defenders Ankit and Sumit. Going into the auction it was clear that they had to focus mainly on their raiding as they did not retain Rohit Gulia and Sachin Tanwar. But what we got to witness in the auction was a complete surprise to all as they built an unexpected squad very similar to season 5- where they finished runners-up.
Gujarat Giants further strengthened their defenders as they signed the Hawk- Ravinder Pahal at a high price. Pahal's addition meant Giants have 3/4 railways defenders who are india's finest. The Gujarat Giants also signed Hadi Oshtorak who can play as an backup Right Corner. In the Left corner position they signed Giresh Ernak who first went unsold but later was brought in to be picked at base price. As expected in the covers the Giants did not focus much and only signed the Iran cover Soleiman Pahlevani.
In the Rading department they did not have any big signing and settled for mostly C category raiders. Giants signed back Sonu Jaglan who in all likelihood will lead the raiding department. They also went on to sign Rathan K from Karnataka who had a good 68th Senior Nationals campaign. Other than Sonu and Rathan, the Gaints have few other C category raiders in the likes of Pardeep Kumar, Ajay Kumar, Mehendra Rajput, Maninder Singh and Harshit Yadav.
Overall the squad balance does not look that great as the raiding looks very much on the weaker side until unless some new signing has a miraculous season. But the defense looks very solid and all the top raiding teams will have a task in hand to get past the defense unit of Gujarat Giants. But the question is will this strategy of a heavy defence unit work or not for a whole season? we can only wait and watch.
Gujarat Giants Squad for PKL 8