The Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 season has been more competitive than ever. Teams have been putting up a fight in every duel, every moment of the game, that has led to more physicality in the league. 

An outcome of such competitiveness and physicality is tackling. An ability that entails a player to make the right decision at the right timing, tackling is no less than an art form and not every player has the ability to master it. From a match-winning tackle to a red card, tackles are a two-way street and can lead to a sore ending for either team.

While as unsightly as it may be, a tackle isn’t as simple as it looks. For any tackle to be successful, it requires a fine amount of decision-making, reading and anticipation of the game, which pretty much forms the crux of any tackle. Over the years, the Hero ISL has produced quality players that have shown their proficiency when it comes to making effective and successful tackles.

On that note, here’s a look at the top five players who have made the most successful tackles in the Hero ISL 2022-23:

1. Ahmed Jahouh (Mumbai City FC) - 49 successful tackles in 21 games

The Islanders’ Moroccan maestro excels in almost every midfield attribute but his tackling ability is second to none. An integral part in the side’s build-up play, Jahouh acts as a multi-faceted player who can also be deployed as an attacking midfielder. His 49 successful tackles have been pivotal to Mumbai City FC’s League Shield triumph this season. Having been a part of the league since the last six seasons, the midfielder is at the top of the pyramid for most number of successful tackles (361) across all seasons.

2. Subhasish Bose (ATK Mohun Bagan) - 39 tackles in 23 games

Not many have been able to dribble past the ATK Mohun Bagan full-back with much ease, all thanks to the defender’s capability of reading the opponent in a one-on-one situation. His 39 tackles have been essential in the Mariners’ Hero ISL title triumph this season. The 28-year-old has been fine-tuned into a reliable defender by head coach Juan Ferrando, forming an upward trajectory from 28 tackles in 2020-21 season, 35 tackles in 2021-22 season, to 39 tackles in the 2022-23 season.

3. Julius Duker (Chennaiyin FC) - 37 tackles in 20 games

A debut season under a debutant head coach in Thomas Brdaric, Duker impressed everyone with his tackling ability at Chennaiyin FC. Having conceded 37 goals in the 2022-23 (third most across all teams), the midfielder’s 37 tackles went under the radar. The 27-year-old German possesses immense potential and has shown the ability to be one of the best tacklers this season.

4. Roshan Naorem (Bengaluru FC) - 35 tackles in 24 games

The Hero ISL 2021-22 Emerging Player of the Season may have not been able to replicate his attacking output from last season, but that didn’t hamper his defensive abilities. The left-back accumulated 35 tackles across all games this season and was key in pinning down attackers running down the left channel. Along with his precise tackles, his overlapping runs in the midfield and his tireless workrate were highly beneficial for Bengaluru FC.

5. Ivan Kaliuzhyni (Kerala Blasters FC) - 34 tackles in 18 games

Known for his outrageous long-range goals, the midfielder has been crucial in the middle of the park for Kerala Blasters FC. The Ukrainian, who posseses good positional awareness, is always ready for a challenge. The 26-year-old also has a knack of progressing the ball to the attacking third after winning back the ball, and that has been of huge importance for the Blasters, leading to numerous goals this season.