Teams will break the bank to get these superstars into their ranks.
The Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) 8 auction inches closer than ever and all franchises are looking for a high-end restructuring. Many teams will be fighting to land top raiders, defenders and all-rounders from under the hammer and several bidding wars can easily take place. We take a look at five players who can go for the highest value at the upcoming auctions.
5. Rohit Gulia
Rohit Gulia is the whole package. A leader on the mat, Gulia is also a capable scorer on both sides. The all-rounder was the leading scorer for the Gujarat Fortunegiants in Season 7. He scored 142 total points, which also included 10 tackle points.
After having plied his trade diligently for the Ahmedabad-based franchise since its inception and the start of his career, Gulia is now under the hammer. One of the few bright spots in Gujarat’s first non-knockout campaign in PKL, Rohit Gulia offers a strong base for teams looking to reshape their core ahead of the Pro Kabaddi League 8 auction. A team player, he can be a valuable asset to any side wanting to make a title charge.
4. Rohit Kumar
Part of two title-winning campaigns, Rohit Kumar can be a polarizing commodity. While many trust in him to deliver at the same high level, others find ways to marginalize his performances in the shadows of Pardeep Narwal and Pawan Sehrawat. Let’s not forget that this talismanic raider was the Season 3 MVP, as he led the Patna Pirates to their first title. He was also the captain of the Season 6 title-winning Bengaluru Bulls.
After a mixed tenure at the Bulls, Rohit Kumar is up for grabs at the Pro Kabaddi League 8 auction. His output seems to have suffered last season, as he only scored 100 points for the Bulls. However, his hunger for victory could attract several teams, especially as he is a proven leader. He has amassed 711 total points in his career, which also includes a brilliant 41 tackle points.
3. Siddharth Desai
Never has a newcomer taken the world of Pro Kabaddi League by storm like Siddharth Desai. The former U Mumba star was a spectacle to witness in Season 6, when he, as a rookie began to break records while performing at a high level for his side. He ended the season with 218 raid points, as the Mumbai-based outfit reached the knockout stages comfortably.
His performances earned him a transfer to the Telugu Titans the following year, as the Hyderabad-based team were looking for a new face to fill the gap left by Rahul Chaudhari. He duly obliged scoring a remarkable 220 points, but that failed to translate into team success. His remarkable growth in the span of two years is bound to attract teams and with it a huge amount at the Pro Kabaddi League 8 auction.
2. Deepak Niwas Hooda
Deepak Hooda is a multi-talented all-rounder who can head a franchise with unbelievable fortitude. The former Pink Panther is coming off a remarkable Season 7 in which he led the Rajasthan outfit in scoring, notching 158 points in the campaign. The team missed out on possible knockout qualification by fine margins, ending up seventh.
In Deepak, teams are not only going to get a raider and a defender but also a leader who can lead a stable lineup behind him. This attractive quality makes him one of the most sought-after stars at the Pro Kabaddi League 8 auction and many teams will jump at the opportunity to accquire his services.
1. Pardeep Narwal
No matter what auction, it is very rare to spot a player with the talent and star-power up for grabs. Patna Pirates’ decision to part ways with the face of the franchise could prove to be costly. Firstly, Pardeep has a massive fan-following that is bound to follow him wherever he goes. Secondly, Pardeep leaves behind a gap of 200+ raid points per season, which the Pirates need to fill properly if they want to have a shot at the title in Season 8. And the third and final point is that allowing Pardeep to join an opposition outfit will improve their chances considerably.
It will be interesting to see which teams want him more and a bidding war of the highest order could easily manifest for the raider who currently has 1169 total points in the PKL, the highest of all-time.