After a solid start to the season against reigning defending champions Mumbai Maharathis in the inaugural match, the Haryana Hammers will feature against UP Dangal in the second season of Patanjali Powervita Pro Wrestling League (PWL) tomorrow.
As the team roster suggests, it won’t be an easy affair for them as the star-studded UP team includes Commonwealth gold medalist Geeta Phogat, Babita Kumari, Maria Mamashuk and marquee player Elitsa Yankova along with Amit Dahiya.
The most sought after fights will be between Geeta and Marwa Amri, along with Sandeep Tomar and Amit Dahiya.
Babita Kumari will be eager to repeat her performance same as in season-1, where she outshone World No 3 Ukraine grappler Tatyana Kit, who was representing Haryana then.
The Wrestling season is just there in time. After the release of Bollywood film – Dangal, all eyes are set on Geeta and Babita and they are expected to prove that they still have the same energy and aggression, which was portrayed in the film.
If the current form is considered, Marwa Amri is in good form after beating Sarita in the first bout, and it will be a close battle when she will take on Geeta on the mat. The way Geeta had brought down World champion Oksana Herhel of Ukraine in the previous season, nothing is impossible for the Dhaakad girl.
The other team members of Haryana squad are Kiran (75kg), Indu Choudhary (48kg) and Sumit (74kg) who will take the mat but it all depends on the result between Andrey Kviatkovski and Rajneesh in men’s 65kg weight category.
Speaking about the tie between Geeta and Elitsa, Sunny Katyal of UP Dangal team said, “Elitsa is world renowned player and has acclaimed various accolades, whereas we have a huge respect and feel proud for what Geeta has done till now. But having them both makes our team more balanced now.”
The Rio Olympics medalist Elitsa Yankova (48kg) and World championship silver medalist Abdusalam Gadisov are marquee players for UP and Haryana respectively.