Kabaddi Masters: Pakistan beat Kenya to seal last semis spot

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Dubai, June 27 (IANS) Pakistan secured the last semi-final spot, defeating Kenya 42-20 in the last Group A match of the Kabaddi Masters at the Al Wasl Sports club here on Wednesday.

Some good defence and offence helped Pakistan defeat the African champions. They will now face Iran in the semi-finals on Friday.

The other two teams which qualified for the last four are world champions India and South Korea, making it an all-Asian affair.

Pakistan started perfectly, as their raiders and defenders seemed to be in good touch and inflicted an all-out within nine minutes of the game.

Muhammad Nadeem, skipper Nasir Ali and Akhlaq Hussain dominated the newbies with their skills as Kenya struggled to hold the trio. Kashif Razzaq was also impressive with his raids.

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Kenya managed to take some points but that was not enough to narrow the lead in the first half. Both teams went to the half time with scoreboard reading 22-7 in favour of the Asian team.

The start of the second half witnessed another all-out Pakistan, as the corners did perfectly well to hold Kenya’s skipper David.

With the match almost in the hands of Pakistan, the series of substitution started and the Asian team tested their defenders.

In the process, Pakistan missed an opportunity to inflict the third all-out. In the 30th minute, the Pakistani defence made a blunder and failed to grab the raider.

Pakistan made another mistake and forced themselves to play with one player. But Nadeem made a couple of successful raids to revive his team.

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The last few minutes saw Pakistan grabbing couple of points and inflicting another all-out to make it 42-18 thus closing the issue handsomely.

Earlier in the first match of the day, South Korea registered an easy win over Argentina 54-25 to make it a lop-sided affair.

Argentina made a bright start and matched South Korea in first 10 minutes but couldn’t keep up with the momentum and thus lost by a huge margin to bow out of the meet.

–IANS

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