The Jaipur Pink Panthers and the Bengal Warriors played out the first tie of season 10 of the Pro Kabaddi League on Thursday. The Patna Pirates ended the Gujarat Giants’ winning run in the final match of the Ahmedabad leg of the tournament.
In a highly entertaining match, the Pink Panther and the Warriors played out a 28-28 tie. Bhavani Rajput recorded a super 10 for the Jaipur Pink Panthers while Shrikant Jadhav top-scored for the Warriors with seven points in the match.
The Pink Panthers got off to a great start and didn’t allow the Warriors to pick up a point in the opening minutes of the match. It took the guile of Shrikant Jadhav on a do or die raid to get the Warriors on board. From there on, the Warriors constantly kept the Pink Panthers’ numbers restricted on the mat, logging points constantly.
Numbers didn’t matter for the Pink Panthers though. Their defence led by Ankush logged three super tackles in a row in the first half to ensure they held the lead at the break. So dominant was the Pink Panthers’ defensive unit that it contributed eight tackle points to their tally as they led 13-9 at halftime.
To the Warriors’ credit, they didn’t get deterred by the Panthers’ defence and kept attacking without abandon. They won their reward early in the second half, inflicting the first all out of the game to take a 16-13 lead.
Once again the Pink Panthers surged, and going into the last ten minutes, the teams were locked at 20 points apiece. Right at the end, Jadhav thought he’d won it with 10 seconds left to play, but Rajput pulled off a raid point right after. Warriors’ captain Maninder Singh was happy to carry out an empty raid to settle for a tie in the end.
Pirates end Giants’ winning run
The Patna Pirates put on a stupendous showing to beat the Gujarat Giants 33-30 in an absolute nail-biter of a clash.
Sachin and Rohit Gulia got the Pirates and the Giants respectively, off the blocks with their first raids of the game, after which the former champions raced into a three-point lead within the first three minutes of the game. The Pirates continued to dominate the early exchanges, with each one of them pitching in against the home team. However, as the first half progressed, the Giants started to fight back.
Compact and well-drilled, both sides continued to go at each other with all they had, and with less than eight minutes to go in the half, the scores were level at 9-9. While Sourav Gulia and Rakesh were leading the charge for the Giants, it was Sudhakar M who picked up the baton for the Pirates in the first half, which ended with both sides tied on 12-12.
The Patna Pirates were off the blocks at good pace in the second half, with Sachin landing a crucial all out on the Giants, to give themselves a seven-point lead, and some much-needed breathing space in what was turning out to be an absolute thriller.
The Giants were finding it tough to get going on the night as Sachin, Neeraj and Ankit continued to dominate. At the halfway point in the second half, the Patna Pirates led by 11 points.
Another all out went in favour of the Pirates, who further stretched their lead to 14 points with just under nine minutes to go. However, Rakesh and Sombir, encouraged by the talismanic Fazel Atrachali, kept the Giants in the hunt. With five minutes left on the clock, the Pirates had a nine-point lead. The home team then landed an all out on the Pirates, giving the supporters something to cheer about.
With two minutes left, Rakesh notched up his super 10, before he continued to power on, cutting down the lead to two points. However, the late charge was not enough, as the Pirates walked off the mat with full points.