Hyderabad, July 30 (IANS) Former champions U Mumba overcame debutants Haryana Steelers 29-28 in a gripping encounter of the fifth edition of the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium here on Sunday.
Kashiling Adake (seven points) and captain Anup Kumar (six) starred for the Mumbai outfit, who were staring at second consecutive defeat following opening-match reversal against hosts Telugu Titans on Friday.
Tacklers Surinder Singh (four) and Joginder Narwal (three) too chipped in with crucial contributions for Mumba.
For the Haryana side, Vikash Khandola (six) and Wazir Singh (six) were the key raiders, while in defence, Surender Nada (five) and Rakesh Kumar Singh (three) played a big role in giving them the four-point lead at half-time.
Mumba started strong, driven by raider Kashiling Adake’s power and energy, while the rival raiders struggled. Mumbai took a 7-4 lead but Haryana side fought back and equalised at 8-8.
Based on a strong defence, with Surender Nada and Mohit Chillar being the lynchpin at both corners, Haryana’s elevation was pure teamwork.
Raiders Wazir Singh, Vikash Khandola and Surjeet Singh did well in attack, while Surender and Rakesh Kumar Singh starred in the defence department. They eliminated raiders Shabeer Bapu and Kashiling to torment Mumba.
At the stroke of half-time, Anup Kumar too was touched out by Khandola as Haryana inflicted an all out on Mumbai to lead 15-11 at the end of first 20 minutes of play.
Haryana began the second half quite strongly and continued their domination till 30 minutes.
In the following event, a big moment of the match arrived when Kashiling gained three touch points to bring his side’s deficit to only one. It opened up the game in which until this moment, Haryana seemed to be too strong.
Couple of minutes later, Mumbai forced an all out for Haryana, grabbing a 22-20 lead. Later, Wazir and Khandola continued to rattled Mumba while Kashling too did the job for Mumba.
Haryana’s strong defence reduced the difference to one at the 29th minute but an unsuccessful raid, followed by experienced Anup’s time-buying raid sealed the match in favour of Mumba.
(Abhishek Purohit can be contacted at [email protected])