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PKL 8: U Mumba beat Jaipur Pink Panthers 37-28

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Bengaluru, Dec 30 (IANS) U Mumba defeated Jaipur Pink Panthers 37-28 in the VIVO Pro Kabaddi League Season 8 at the Sheraton GrandWhitefield, here on Thursday.

Young raider V Ajith Kumar and Abhishek Singh bagged 11 and 10 points respectively in U Mumba’s second win of the season. For the Jaipur Pink Panthers, Arjun Deshwal was the only shining star as he picked up 14 points but sadly lacked support from his teammates.

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U Mumba won the toss and invited Jaipur Pink Panthers to make the first raid. Both the teams started on a cautious note as neither of them tried to take a strong hold of the match in the initial raids.

Jaipur Pink Panthers took a slender lead at 2-1 when Abhishek Singh perished in a do-or-die raid. The Jaipur team continued to hold the lead at 5-4 when Deepak Hooda was tackled but Sultan Fazel Atrachali had to go out of bounds in the melee.

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U Mumba then turned the tables with a super raid when Ajith Kumar escaped a double thigh hold as they snatched the lead at 7-5. From then, the Mumbai team never looked back. Ajith Kumar hit a purple patch and picked up raid points at will while he got excellent support from Abhishek Singh.

Ajith Kumar hardly put a foot wrong. He was agile, his strategy was spot on and he escaped the defenders’ clutches with ease. The raider knew his moves to perfection and made sure the Jaipur Pink Panthers’ defence had no answers to his humongous raids.

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U Mumba inflicted the first all out of the match when Abhishek cornered both the Pink Panthers’ defenders as they stretched their lead to 12-7.

The Jaipur Pink Panthers tried every trick in the book to try and come back into the match but it was only Arjun Deshwal who was left the lone warrior. He had too much work on his hands to reduce the arrears and a sloppy defence didn’t do any good to Pink Panthers either.

Abhishek took an extraordinary last raid of the first half when he jumped, ran and dodged a thigh hold from Dharmaraj Cheralathanand took another defender on his way to help U Mumba take a healthy 21-12 lead at the half time.

U Mumba continued to be the better team after the restart and inflicted a second all out on Jaipur Pink Panthers at 25-13 when Deepak Hooda couldn’t escape a thigh hold from Rinku and Fazel Atrachali’s clutches.

Arjun Deshwal soon brought up his Super 10 when he got a running hand touch on Moshen Maghsoudlou but Jaipur Pink Panthers were off the mark by a mile.

U Mumba continued to call the shots and Ajith got his Super 10 when he sent veteran Dharmaraj, and the Mumbai team led by 28-16.

Fazel then joined the fun when he sent Deepak Hooda out of the mat with a ruthless thigh hold as his team gave nothing away to their opponents.

Meanwhile, Arjun was left to do everything on his own and tried to reduce the arrears with every passing raid but lacked support from all corners.

Arjun tried to put out every trick in the book he had. He was their best by a mile. He dodged the defenders well and made sure he always had an escape route to the centre line. U Mumba’s Abhishek soon got his Super 10 when he escaped a back hold attempt as his team led by a mammoth 12 points.

However, a rare gaffe in the end by Abhishek when he wanted to go for an all out saw him lose his footing on a double thigh hold but by then U Mumba had set the result in stone.

–IANS

inj/cs

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