The Puneri Paltan secured their spot as the first finalists of the 2023-24 Pro Kabaddi League with a comprehensive 37-21 win over three-time champions Patna Pirates on Wednesday.

Skipper Aslam Indamdar starred with seven raid points in what was an all-round performance from the team. The Paltan will now face off against Haryana Steelers, who defeated Jaipur Pink Panthers in the second semi-final, in the title clash on Friday.

It was a close start to the contest as both Puneri Paltan and Patna Pirates exchanged early blows to keep the fans on the edge of their seats.

Sachin Tanwar was the pick of the raiders for the Pirates once again but on the other side of the mat, an all-round performance from the Puneri Paltan slightly kept them ahead of their opponents as they began to get a hold of the game.

Mohit Goyat's successful do or die raid in the sixth minute started a flurry of points towards the end of the first half for the Paltan, inflicting an all out on the Patna Pirates.

Continuing his good run of form, Mohmmadreza Shadloui led the defensive unit as the Paltan led 20-11 at the end of the first half.

The Paltan carried the same momentum into the second half, getting the Patna Pirates all out once again.

Tanwar and Sudhakar kept adding to the points for the Pirates but in the end, it was the Pune based team, who went home the happier side.

Inamdar and Pankaj Mohite complemented each other well in the raiding department, while Shadloui had support from Abinesh and Gaurav Khatri.

Haryana Steelers beat Jaipur Pink Panthers

A tactically astute Haryana Steelers beat the Jaipur Pink Panthers 31-27 to book their place in the final, later in the day.

The Steelers' first-ever semi-final win was the result of a brilliant team performance, with their raiding duo of Vinay and Shivam Patare the stars on an emotional evening.

The tense nature of the encounter meant neither side committed too much forward or took too many risks, resulting in a low-scoring but absorbing affair.

Arjun Deshwal and Vinay traded raids constantly and with both defences firing there seemed to be little to choose between the two sides for the opening period.

The difference lay in the variety the Steelers offered on the raid. The majority of Jaipur's raid points this season have come via Deshwal and he contributed exactly 80% of their raid points in the first half of the game.

Without him the Pink Panthers looked lost and so the Steelers started targeting the lead man. Soon enough they inflicted the first all out of the game to take a 13-7 lead, and kept chugging away, with Vinay and Patare's dual attack offering no respite for the Pink Panthers. The Steelers went into the break leading by 6 points.

The Pink Panthers rallied in the second half, buoyed by Deshwal's ability to keep bringing back points from his raids. Their weak link though was a defence that was unable to stop the Steelers raiders from doing the same.

Through the first half hour of the game the Pink Panthers defence managed a mere three tackle points.

Just when it seemed like they had momentum on their side though the Steelers raiders hit back and streaked into a six point lead.

With Deshwal off the mat, the Pink Panthers looked out of sorts, and Vinay's do our die raid to take out Bhavani Rajput and Sunil Kumar put them on track for another all out.

A super tackle by Reza Mirbagheri staved off not just the all out but also brought the Pink Panthers to within four points with three minutes to play.

In crunch time the Steelers were the ones who held their nerve, and Ashish's tackle on Deshwal with one minute left, effectively sealed the game. They ran down the clock, to spark raucous celebrations on their bench, taking their spot in the finals for the first time.