U Mumba and Dabang Delhi on Saturday notched up big wins in the Pro Kabaddi League at the Noida Indoor Stadium.

U Mumba secured their fourth victory on the trot as they beat bottom-placed Telugu Titans 54-32. U Mumba had a bunch of star performers as Guman Singh (10 raid points), Rinku (eight tackle points) and Sombir (eight tackle points) shined on the big stage.

It was an evenly contested match until the 10th minute when both sides were tied at seven points, post which U Mumba took off. Iranian raider Amirmohammad Zafardanesh executed a stunning raid to get rid of three defenders in the 11th minute. He came back to torment the Titans’ defence again when he got the better of Milad Jabbari and Parvesh Bhainswal to inflict an all out. With five minutes left in the first half, U Mumba led 17-12.

It was then Guman Singh’s turn to produce a super raid as he outsmarted three defenders and U Mumba coasted to a six-point lead at 21-15. The Titans endured more misery and ended the first half with just one man and were at the receiving end of an all out in the 21st minute.

Sombir produced a massive tackle on Prafull Zaware to give his side a 27-18 lead.

The Titans, missing the services of their captain Pawan Sehrawat, fought back through some strong raiding from Rajnish. A super raid from him in the 26th minute saw U Mumba down to two men, but the men in orange handled the pressure well as Jai Bhagwan trapped Rajnish in an iron-clad ankle hold for a super tackle. With 10 minutes to go, U Mumba led 34-26.

However, a mistake from Bhagwan saw him fall short of the baulk line and the Titans were given another golden opportunity as their opponents were reduced to three. But the Titans’ raiders failed to capitalize as U Mumba executed three super tackles. And all three came from their right corner, Rinku.

There was more joy in store for U Mumba as Bhagwan made amends for his earlier error by wiping out the Titans’ three-man defence to grab a super raid and inflict a third all out on the Titans. That raid gave U Mumba a 19-point lead at 48-29. A super tackle from Sombir wrapped up the game and U Mumba posted their biggest win of the season.

Delhi thump Yoddhas

A superlative Dabang Delhi put UP Yoddhas to the sword, as they won 35-25. Raider Ashu Malik, with 11 points, and defender Ashish, with five points, were the standout performers for Delhi on the day.

In as much as this was the UP Yoddhas home turf it was also Dabang Delhi’s, and in the early going they basked in it. Five minutes into the game Ashu Malik’s super raid, the first of the evening, put Dabang Delhi KC in front and from thereon over the next few minutes they barely put a foot wrong in the game. Despite a brief resistance led by Surender Gill, Delhi inflicted the first all out to take a 13-7 lead.

The half was defined by high class raiding and some lacklustre defending with both teams logging a mere five tackle points in the half. In Naveen Kumar’s absence, Dabang Delhi’s raiding trio split 13 points between them to keep the lead intact as they went into the break.

The UP Yoddhas silently chipped away at the Dabang Delhi numbers and the lead to put them on the ropes early in the second half. A strong super tackle by Yogesh on Pardeep Narwal though saved them the blushes. That tackle also led to UP Yoddhas’ defender Nitesh Kumar being handed a yellow card for ill-discipline, tilting the game back into Delhi’s favour, who extended their lead.

If the first half had been a raiding paradise, the second proved to be one for the defenders to make hay. The UP Yoddhas spent the final five minutes of the game mostly with three players on the mat, desperately trying to cut away at the Dabang Delhi lead.

But for every tackle they made, Delhi matched them perfectly, and then came the coup de grace with the final raid of the evening. Malik went in for Delhi knowing that just letting time tick away would confirm the win and yet, with ten seconds left he jumped in, got all three UP Yoddhas players to inflict a second all out and secure a brilliant win.