New Delhi: Three-time champions Patna Pirates on Wednesday beat UP Yoddha 38-27 while Dabang Delhi KC defeated Bengaluru Bulls 40-35 to set up a title clash against each other in the Pro Kabaddi League Season 8 here.
In the first semifinal, star defender Mohammadreza Shadloui and Sunil picked up High 5s for Patna while at the other end raiders Sachin (7 points) and Guman Singh (8 points) ensured a difficult night for UP Yoddha.
UP Yoddha’s Pardeep Narwal had a quiet outing with just four points in the entire match.
In fact, it was substituted Shrikant Jadhav who performed best for UP Yoddha in attack, scoring 10 points (including 2 for a Super Tackle).
Later in the day, Dabang Delhi qualified for their second consecutive final of PKL by getting the better of Bengaluru Bulls.
Naveen Kumar picked a Super 10 (14 points) as Delhi’s experienced stars made it a night to remember by clinching a comeback win.
Pawan Sehrawat (18 points) gave the Bulls a fast start, but Delhi secured important ALL OUTs at crucial points of the game to turn the match in their favour.
The final of the event will be played on Friday.
Earlier, Patna started on the front foot with their star defender Shadloui looking in red-hot form.
The raiding duo of Sachin and Guman Singh attacked at the other end and even Ashu Singh’s Super Tackle wasn’t enough to prevent an ALL OUT in the 10th minute.
Patna continued to dominate the proceedings with Prashanth Kumar Rai also joining in the attack with important touch points.
Pardeep Narwal and Surender Gill had no answers to Patna’s high intensity defending.
Once again Ashu Singh produced a Super Tackle on Sachin but that could not stop Patna from getting their second ALL OUT in the 17th minute to open a 14-point lead.
Interestingly, all the seven players of Patna had contributed with at least one point each, while Pardeep Narwal was yet to get off his mark. Narwal did get two points in the final minutes of the first half but Patna maintained their healthy 23-9 lead at the interval.
Patna continued to control the mat in the early minutes of the second half.
Narwal and Surender struggled to find errors in the Patna defence while the likes of Guman and Sachin kept the Yoddha defenders guessing.
The three-time champions cleared all the Yoddha men on the mat with another ALL OUT with 11 minutes remaining to open a 17-point lead.
Shadloui picked his High 5 as Patna showed no signs of taking their foot off the pedal.
Coach Ram Mehar Singh wanted his side to slow down the pace of the match but Yoddha’s substitute raider Shrikant Jadhav kept them busy. He became the lead raider for UP in their desperate attempt to make a comeback. They reduced Patna’s lead to 12 points with five minutes remaining.
UP Yoddha inflicted an ALL OUT with under three minutes remaining to further reduce Patna’s lead to seven points.
But Patna proved their mettle with a stunning tackle on Narwal by substitute Monu. Sachin then followed it up with an important raid point. They made it an 11-point lead with a minute remaining and ensured there were no slip-ups in the dying seconds to enter the final.