The Tamil Thalaivas couldn’t really fire up to something significant in the precursor edition of the tournament as they would finish in the eleventh position of the points table with a meagre 5 wins from the 22 contests that they were a part of. They finished their season with a crushing defeat against the Gujarat Giants as the latter produced an extraordinary show of 43 points, 10 ahead of the Thalaivas.
Despite a bitter taste in their mouth at the end of the season, they were pretty happy with the valiant efforts that their players put in and believed in the unified strength which according to the management can reap handsome dividends in the forthcoming season.
Ahead of the upcoming auction, a total of eight players were retained by the Tamil Thalaivas from their last year’s squad. The retained squad include the likes of Ajinkya Ashok Pawar from the Elite Player Category, Sagar from Retained Young Player, Sahil Gulia, Aashish, Mohit, and Himanshu from the New Existing Young Player Category; and Himanshu Singh & M Abishek from the Retained Young Player Category.
Here is a quick glance at the players and their numbers in the PKL 2021-22:
1. Tamil Thalaivas have retained Ajinkya Ashok Pawar
Oru pudhu season. Oru pudhiya aarambam!
The auction day is nearing.
And we look the pick a formidable squad to help Team Tamil Thalaivas pack a punch.#VivoPKLPlayerAuction#IdhuNammaAatam#VivoProKabaddi pic.twitter.com/g7ap402TLPAdvertisement
— Tamil Thalaivas (@tamilthalaivas) August 3, 2022
One of their chief raiders was a part of 18 matches in the preceding season and managed to earn 108 raid points at a phenomenal strike rate of 51 percent. His exploits also featured five super 10s and one Super raid in the preceding edition. He also bagged six tackle points in 2022 and almost single-handedly led the charge for the Thalaivas.
2. Tamil Thalaivas have retained Sagar Rathee
Sagar was one of the paragons of the Tamil defence that saw him bagging 82 tackle points that featured eight high 5s and eight Super Tackles. His tackle success rate was more than a staggering 50 percent. His determination to chain down the opposition raiders makes him a tenacious pick in the lines of Thalaivas.
3. Tamil Thalaivas have retained Sahil Gulia
Gulia is probably a man for the forthcoming edition of the tournament as his inclusion in the side was a questionable decision by the Thalaivas. He hardly managed game time in the preceding season but showed promised in the interior ranks. He has been retained by the Thalaivas in the New Existing Young Player Category.
Aashish isn’t any different from Sahil Gulia as he too struggled to find mat time but was pretty promising in his limited stints. His retention indicates more game time for the youngster in the upcoming season.
Another surprising retention strategy showed by the Thalaivas was that of Mohit as his total haul included 24 tackle points from 20 games, numbers that won’t intrigue any franchise to play the retention card for this man. He was retained in the New Existing Young Player Category.
Enna Thalaivas, aarambiklangala?
Let’s welcome the New Young Players to the squad.#VivoPKLPlayerAuction#IdhuNammaAatam#VivoProKabaddi pic.twitter.com/Ycvm67MdoaAdvertisement
— Tamil Thalaivas (@tamilthalaivas) August 2, 2022
Himanshu showed all-round prowess in the preceding edition with 38 raid points that featured one Super Raid. He will be hoping to improve his numbers under the New Existing Young Player Category.
7. Himanshu Singh
Another questionable decision made by the Thalaivas was that of the raider Himanshu Singh who was a part of only 6 games and could only bag 7 raid points. His striking rate in raids was a smattering 30 percent which enhances his technically undercooked physical aspect.
8. Tamil Thalaivas have retained Abhishek
Abhishek did show promise in the handful of seven games that he was a part of. However, it wasn’t magnificent enough to make it a rollicking show either. The Thalaivas must have some strategy to retain this big man.