9.26 pm: That will be all from us for the night, hope you enjoyed our coverage! Stay tuned for match report and a feature to follow up on this final. Remember, one tournament ends and another starts. It’s Indian Super League from Sunday. Goodnight and thanks for joining us on this Saturday evening.
9.25 pm: Pawan Sehrawat wins the best raider award for the season. Fazel is the best defender. And fittingly, Naveen Kumar gets the MVP award.
9.13 pm: Jeeva Kumar was sensational for Warriors in defence. Numbers say four tackle points but his influence was much more than that. Nabibakhsh too was sensational as he picks up a couple of awards.
9.07 pm: Joy for Bengal Warriors who were deserving winners on the night. Delhi’s support cast, so impressive in the semi-final, failed to turn up tonight as Naveen is unconsolable.
9.05 pm: BENGAL WARRIORS ARE CHAMPIONS! Iran’s Nabibakhsh was the star for his side as Naveen Kumar’s best efforts were not enough to help Dabang Delhi. Tears for him, he is crestfallen. 18 points in a losing cause for Naveen.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 34-39 Bengal Warriors: Poor tackle to finish the night fittingly for Delhi. All but done.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 34-38 Bengal Warriors: Naveen has another point and Delhi will have one more time.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 33-38 Bengal Warriors: Kumawat has a touch point! Oh dear, Delhi defence.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 33-37 Bengal Warriors: Naveen rushes back after one touch point! Should he have gone for more?
Second half, Dabang Delhi 32-37 Bengal Warriors: Naveen has another bonus point but that is not helping the side. Poor tactics this from Delhi, really. But he has a 2-point raid next up. Five-point match now. Well, well. 100 seconds left.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 29-37 Bengal Warriors: Just a question of time management for Warriors now. Delhi have had THREE TACKLE POINTS. Sums it up. Kumawat picks up another point on a raid.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 28-36 Bengal Warriors: Delhi’s defence has failed to turn up for the big match. It’s been a disappointing performance from the league-leaders. Pahal is out as Hegde has a point. Vijay is tackled next. Naveen picks up a bonus point as we have another timeout. He’s been great but let down badly his team tonight, we are afraid.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 26-34 Bengal Warriors: Delhi has wasted a review. No bonus point for Naveen. No more reviews for either side now.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 26-34 Bengal Warriors : TIME OUT! Narwal is animated but the commentators have had a go at the Delhi captain too for his attitude in the final. He was injured earlier and has looked out of sorts. Naveen is clearly frustrated with something. Not looking good for Delhi. About 6 mins left in this match.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 24-34 Bengal Warriors: IS the final unravelling for Delhi at the moment? Naveen and Ranjit are both sent to the bench and soon after Delhi are ALL OUT again. Heads are dropping, shoulders are drooping.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 24-26 Bengal Warriors: SUPER 10 for Naveen! 21st of the tournament on the trot. A two-point raid followed by a bonus point.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 21-25 Bengal Warriors: ALL OUT! Delhi are found out tactically. Bengal moves ahead.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 20-22 Bengal Warriors: Trouble for Delhi. Do or die raid results in a superb point for Kumawat. Joginer Narwal is having an ordinary night. Nabibakhsh with another point and Delhi down to one man. Last raider.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 19-19 Bengal Warriors: Naveen is out of action again as Warriors come up with a good tackle. This match is on a knife’s edge at the moment!
Second half, Dabang Delhi 18-18 Bengal Warriors: We have a review after a bit of a controversy. Nabibakhsh claims he has touched Naveen on a raid but Delhi are miffed at the claim. Officials say no touch. And the Iranian is not even close! Unsuccessful. Raider out. Crucial moment. Review gone, captain on the bench.
Second half, Dabang Delhi 17-17 Bengal Warriors: The final 20 minutes of the season, if we don’t have overtime.
Naveen Kumar starts off with an empty raid.
Kaushal Shukla: There was nothing between the teams before the match, there is nothing to separate them after a half of the final. Exciting finish in store.
8.24 pm: HALF-TIME: Dabang Delhi 17-17 Bengal Warriors!
WHAT A FIRST HALF! Stunning grit and determination on display from Warriors, led by their captain for the night. Naveen has been out of action for 7 minutes in the half.
Kaushal Shukla: Nabibakhsh has been the man for all seasons for Bengal Warriors. Excellent against a defence of four and less, excellent in defence and can lead the team too. And can do that! Special player.
First half, Dabang Delhi 17-17 Bengal Warriors: Nothing can stop Nabibakhsh at the moment! ANd he takes Bengal Warriors into the lead. Naveen levels things again.
First half, Dabang Delhi 15-14 Bengal Warriors: Bengal Warriors Iranian captain Nabibakhsh has produced a series of good raids and then comes up with a stunning effort to produce an all-out! This is a superb turnaround for the Kolkata side. Going up 1 on 2, the Iran star struggles out of a strong tackle and inflicts the allout. MADNESS!
First half, Dabang Delhi 14-10 Bengal Warriors: Nabibakhsh is on fire at the moment! A series of good raids from him. Delhi down to 2 men now and Miraz Sheik comes up with empty raid. And another point for the Bengal captain. Another all out coming up.
First half, Dabang Delhi 12-7 Bengal Warriors: Captain steps up! Nabibhaksh has the point on a do-or-die raid and he continues Bengal Warriors’ resurgence in the match.
First half, Dabang Delhi 12-6 Bengal Warriors: There is the comeback. Both Ranjit and Naveen have been tackled while Hegde picks up a point on the raid and Delhi are down to four now.
First half, Dabang Delhi 11-3 Bengal Warriors: ALL OUT! Bengal needs to regroup and quickly.
First half, Dabang Delhi 7-1 Bengal Warriors: Superb start for Dabang Delhi. Naveen is on fire early on so is the defence. Warriors are struggling, down to 2! Warriors finally have a point. But Naveen comes up with a dubki to pick up another point! He is a brilliant starter and he is on his way again.
First half, Dabang Delhi 4-0 Bengal Warriors: Naveen Kumar picks up a touch point in his 2nd raid, showing off his speed. And the defence then comes up with the tackle against Nabibhaksh. Superb start for Delhi.
First half, Dabang Delhi 2-0 Bengal Warriors: Sukesh Hegde starts off with an empty raid while Chandran Ranjith picks up a bonus point. And Prapanjan gets tackled next up.
8.01 pm: Bengal Warriors will start us off tonight. The national anthem is done, the players are pumped, the atmosphere is building up nicely, reports our man at the venue. We are all set!
7.58 pm: Did you know? Bengal Warriors captain tonight Mohammad Nabibakhsh is the only player this season to have both a Super 10 (ten raid points) and High 5 (five tackles points) this season. Can he inspire the Kolkata side to a win?
7.53 pm: For Dabang Delhi, Naveen Kumar will look to extend his stunning record streak of consecutive Super 10s to 21 matches in the final tonight. For Bengal Warriors, the impressive depth in raiding quality will need to be utilised big time yet again. Who will emerge the winners?
7.50 pm: After enduring disappointing seasons in the past, the story of how Dabang Delhi, Bengal Warriors made it to their first title clash: read here.
7.35 pm: In their two encounters this season, Dabang Delhi and Bengal Warriors played out a 30-30 tie first time around, while Bengal Warriors ran out comfortable winners in the second game. However, the return clash was a late encounter in the league phase when both teams had already qualified for the semi-finals and wasn’t played with the same intensity.
Historically too, there has been nothing to choose between the two teams. On the 14 occasions Bengal have come up against Delhi, there have been six wins for each side with the other two encounters ending in ties.
7.20 pm: A small playing area, multiple action points and quick culmination of play makes officiating in kabaddi a tough task. Here’s the story of the referees, the guardians of the game.
You can follow Kaushal Shukla’s articles on the seventh season in the thread below.
7.15 pm: “For kabaddi, once a sport confined to mud courts of rural India, the new landscape characterised by wholesale and rapid changes, offers more than just hope,” writes Kaushal Shukla in this must-read feature here.
7.08 pm: It’s disappointing for Pawan Sehrawat that he will miss the final after a stellar season he has had but he is at the venue to provide his insights, it seems.
7.00 pm: Some tidbits ahead of the final. 60 minutes to go now for the start...
- The teams which were the front-runners in the raiding department have reached the final this season. In terms of raiding accuracy, Bengal Warriors have the least failed raid percentage (19.5%) and Dabang Delhi has the 2nd lowest failed raid percentage (20.5%).
- Both the teams are at the top two in terms of most all-outs inflicted and least all-outs conceded this season. Net All-Outs is +16 for both teams.
6.56 pm: Head to head
H2H Overall: Matches – 14 | Dabang Delhi – 6 | Bengal Warriors – 6 | Tie - 2
H2H in 2017: Bengal Warriors won one match, while the other was tied
6.50 pm: Confirmation of the starting lineups for both teams...
Delhi team: Joginder (C), Naveen, Anil Kumar, Chandran Ranjit, Vishal Mane, Vijay, Ravinder Pahal
Bengal team: Nabibakhsh (C), Rinku Narwal, Mayur Shivtarkar, K Prapanjan, Jeeva Kumar, Sukesh Hegde, Baldev Singh
6.48 pm: Some big team news early on. No Maninder Singh for Bengal Warriors.
6.43 pm: Here’s Kaushal Shukla with all the key talking points in his statistical preview...
6.33 pm: In case you missed the action on semi-finals day...
6.25 pm: Hello all and welcome to our coverage of the Pro Kabaddi season seven final!
Dabang Delhi KC will take on Bengal Warriors in the final to be played in Ahmedabad on Saturday.
And the league will have a new winner as both the teams are playing their first final.
Dabang Delhi KC made it to the final by defeating defending champions Bengaluru Bulls 44-38 in the semi final, while in the second semi final Bengal Warriors edged past U Mumba 37-35 in a thrilling contest to book a place in the summit clash.
Delhi finished the league phase top of the table, followed by the team from Kolkata and fittingly the top two sides have made their way to the big match, earning a shot at their respective first championship.
While raider Naveen Kumar leads the charge for Delhi, it remains to be seen if Maninder Singh (Bengal’s star raider) is passed fit to play in the final. The latter missed the semi-final due to an injury he suffered against Delhi in the group phase.
The match will be played at EKA Arena by TransStadia where our correspondent Kaushal Shukla is present to provide us with his updates for what promises to be a closely-fought final between the two best sides this season.