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Deepak Hooda sizzles as Jaipur Pink Panthers beat Puneri Paltan in PKL

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Deepak Hooda up against Puneri Paltan in Jaipur Pink Panthers' victory in the PKL.

New Delhi: Pro Kabaddi champions Jaipur Pink Panthers  beat PuneriPaltan 33-25 in a Pro Kabaddi league match. Captain Deepak Niwas Hooda was once again the star for the Pink Panthers, picking nine raid points and marshalling his troops well throughout the match.

With Nitin Tomar securing a bonus point for the Mumba side. But Deepak Hooda, arguably the most improved Kabaddi athlete in the recent years, secured a raid point immediately for the Panthers with his signature hand touch and in the process sent Paltan’s star raider Tomar to the bench.

Paltan struggled from thereon, too many blunders in defence resulting in a high frequency of successful raids for the Pink Panthers.

The season one champions secured their first all-out of the match in the 16th minute and the restart wasn’t too different for the Paltans after a raid by Deepak Hooda sent both their defenders Girish Ernak and Shubham Shinde out. The half ended with a healthy 6-point lead for the Jaipur Pink Panthers (17-11).

Captain for Jaipur Pink Panthers, Deepak Hooda said, “Our entire team performed to the fullest. We executed our game plan exactly the way we wanted it  when the defenders and the raiders both give their 100% into the game, the result is always positive.”

Nitin Tomar’s presence on the mat, three well-executed super tackles and coach Anup Kumar’s calm influence at the dugout were simply not enough for Paltan against a well-organised Panthers side who certainly lived up to the preseason billing as a favourite to win the title.

The result catapulted the Jaipur side to third in the Pro Kabaddi points table while Paltans continued to languish at the bottom.

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Clinical Jaipur Pink Panthers climbs to top of PKL table

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Gujarat Fortunegiants defence against Nitin Rawal from Jaipur Pink Panthers

New Delhi: A clinical Jaipur Pink Panthers saw out Gujarat Fortunegiants in a low-scoring encounter in the final match of the Ahmedabad leg. The season one champions showcased their versatility as they produced a composed defensive performance to win the match by a narrow margin of 22-19.

Both sides opted for a cautious approach in a first half that ended 10-9 in favour of the Pink Panthers. The teams tightened their defences with Gujarat’s Pankaj impressing the most with four successful tackles in his first four attempts. Surprisingly, it was Nilesh Salunke who took on the chief raider’s role for the Pink Panthers as captain Deepak Hooda weighed up his opponents in the earlier minutes.

The impressive all-rounder picked his game up in the second half though, pulling out an impressive tackle on Rohit Gulia and then picking up valuable raid points in the early minutes.

But Gujarat matched the Panthers move for move and a raid by Sachin with little over 11 minutes remaining in the match fetched his side two points, pushed his side into the lead and most importantly sent Deepak Hooda and Nilesh Salunke to the dugout. GB More pulled off a two-point raid for Gujarat with only four minutes remaining in the match to draw the points level at 17-17 but a clever review from Pink Panthers in their following raid helped overturn a decision against them and move to a one-point lead.

The Pink Panthers kept calm in the final minutes, working together as a unit and trusting, what now looks like a well-oiled system, to open up a three-point lead and finally seeing off the match.

“I’ve always said that this is a collective effort. It is a team sport. Our team both the defence and offence played a calculated, mind game because we knew we’d need to play that way against them (Gujarat Fortunegiants). And now we can see the result”, said Jaipur coach Srinivas Reddy.

Gujarat coach Manpreet Singh said he was happy with his players’ effort despite the loss and pointed our his side were unlucky to come away with no points. “What can one say about a hand not crossing the line or some other close decision. Going forward we will try to ensure such small mistakes don’t happen”, he said.

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Kandola, Sunil’s lead Haryana Steelers’ win over UP Yoddha in PKL

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Action during Haryana Steelers' match against UP Yodha on Wednesday.

New Delhi: Haryana Steelers picked up their third successive Season 7 win after overcoming UP Yoddha by a 36-33 scoreline here on Wednesday. Vikash Kandola starred for them in attack with a Super 10, while Sunil dominated in defence and picked up a High 5.

UP Yoddha started strong thanks to a two-point raid by Monu Goyat, which was followed up with a successful Nitesh Kumar tackle. Haryana Steelers got on the scoreboard moments later courtesy of a tackle by Ravi Kumar. Kandola made his presence felt and combined well with Prashanth Kumar Rai as Haryana Steelers began scoring raid points to tie the contest at 5-5.

Haryana Steelers then moved into the lead with Kandola breaking through UP Yoddha’s defence. They enforced the first All-Out of the game on UP Yoddha in the 13th minute to take a 7-11 lead and looked to build on their advantage before halftime. However, successful raids by Shrikant Jadhav and a successful tackle by Nitesh ensured that didn’t happen as Haryana Steelers took just a 16-12 lead into the break. Haryana Steelers began the second period positively after skipper Dharmaraj Cheralathan removed dangerman Jadhav from the mat. UP Yoddha, though, responded with a successful tackle on Kandola to keep him off court and then chipped away at Haryana Steelers’ lead. Surender Singh and Goyat in attack, and Sumit in defence helped U.P. Yoddha inflict an all-out on Haryana Steelers just before the half-hour mark to give UP Yoddha a 21-19 lead.

Despite the all-out, Haryana Steelers continued to play with confidence as both sides began scoring freely at the start of the last quarter. U.P. Yoddha had a one-point lead with a little over four minutes left to play, but the game was still very much on a knife’s edge.

Haryana Steelers tied the score at 27-27 in the next minute to add to the excitement. They then regained the lead in the 38th minute and reduced UP Yoddha to just two men on the court. But UP Yoddha refused to be beaten and tried to resist another all-out with a couple of two-point raids by Jadhav. However, Haryana Steelers eventually inflicted a second all-out on UP Yoddha in the closing stages and held their nerve to register a three-point win.

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UP Yodhha edge out Bengaluru Bulls in a thriller, Bengal Warriors and Telugu Titans share the spoils

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latest sports news headlines
Bengaluru Bulls defense against Shrikant from UP Yoddha

Ahmedabad: UP Yoddha put in a disciplined performance against Bengaluru Bulls to secure a 35-33 victory in an edge-of-the-seat thriller here on Monday. Pawan Sehrawat put in a brilliant all-round performance for side, scoring a Super 10 and also picking up three tackle points. However, Sumit’s High 5 combined with Monu Goyat and Shrikant Jadhav’s effective raiding helped UP Yoddha stay ahead in the contest. latest sports news headlines

Bengaluru Bulls raced away to a 6-1 lead just three minutes into the match thanks to Pawan  Sehrawat, who scored five of those first six points. Monu Goyat, though, responded in style, first picking up two points through a Super Tackle and then putting in a two-point raid to bring the score difference down to just one.

The second half started slow, with both teams playing on the Do-or-Die raid. Bengaluru Bulls succeeded in the first sequence of Do-or-Die raids, getting two points but UP Yoddha proved successful in the next two as the scores remained close. Ashu Singh’s successful tackle to send Pawan to the bench was then followed by a successful Shrikant Jadhav Do-or-Die raid as U.P. Yoddha started to get in front. latest sports news headlines

Pawan then went on a spree of successful raids to reduce the deficit to four points, reaching his Super 10 in the process. His two-point raid with five minutes left in the match, followed by Sheoran’s tackle on Jadhav gave Bengaluru Bulls some momentum before UP Yoddha skipper Nitesh Kumar ensured that his team stayed ahead with two tackle points in quick succession. latest sports news headlines

Rohit made it a one-point game in the penultimate raid of the contest but Jadhav kept his nerve and scored a point against a high-line Bengaluru Bulls defence in the final raid to give U.P. Yoddha a narrow win.

Telugu Titans and Bengal Warriors played out a tie for the fifth time

Telugu Titans, courtesy of their defence and the Desai brothers  Suraj and Siddharth, got off to a strong start and took an early two-point lead in the contest. They maintained that lead till midway in the first half, but a run of unanswered points from Bengal Warriors levelled the scores at 7-7. Amit Kumar and Suraj helped Telugu Titans reduce Bengal Warriors to just three men on the mat, but a picture-perfect Thigh Hold from Mohammad Nabibakhsh on Siddharth levelled the scores yet again. latest sports news headlines

Telugu Titans Farhad Milaghardan put his team back up by one with a tackle on Maninder Singh, but Nabibakhsh showcased his all-round ability and levelled the scores with a touchpoint on Amit Kumar. In the final moments of the half, Suraj was Dashed out, but a review from Telugu Titans revealed that the raider had stepped out of bounds before getting a touch on a defender. This meant that Suraj, along with three defenders that entered the lobby, were rendered self-out and the two teams headed into the half-time break with the southerners leading 13-11.

In the final minute of the contest, Armaan came in to raid and successfully scored a bonus before being tackled by Rinku Narwal as each team earned a point and the scores remained level. Given the precarious nature of the contest, neither Maninder nor Suraj ventured too deep into the opposition half in the final two raids of the contest and the clock expired, confirming another tie between these two sides. latest sports news headlines

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