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UBA Pro Basketball: Punjab Steelers humiliate Haryana Gold 99-65 in a one-sided affair

Manoj R led from the front for Punjab as they managed to pull one back to register their first win of the tournament.

Manoj R led from the front for Punjab 

Blame it on the poor networking in the team, Haryana Gold, faced off yet another humiliating defeat, as they were trounced 65-99 by Punjab Steelers in the second edition of UBA Professional Basketball League, at the Balewadi Sports Complex here on Thursday.

In a clash with none of the teams having won in the previous encounters, Punjab (0-3) while Haryana (0-2), sharp-shooter Manoj R led from the front for Punjab as they managed to pull one back to register their first.

“They are just two former players in the side, and they are yet to combine as a team,  and at the same time, I feel they played very aggressive, but at the same time, they failed to defend, and that was a clear let off for us. I am sure they will improve in the matches ahead, ” said Haryana’s coach Shiba.

Manoj is a good shooter, and a lot depends on him: Coach

Haryana who were down 0-10 in the first three minutes of the game, made up levelling the score at 16-16 at one stage, and that was the only time they showed some signs of giving it back to their opponents, as they failed to match their rivals in all departments of the game. And in a low scoring session, the teams scored 39 points in the first quarter, with Punjab mustering 21- and Haryana 18. Haryana had a major setback as their main striker Sushant was injured in the first four minutes of play and was ruled out of the game.

The former Kerala skipper, Manoj came up with his brilliance. And proved he was the best for the three-pointers in this game. His five such act saw Punjab race to a 50-32 lead after 20 minutes of play.

“Yes, he is a good shooter, and a lot depends on him,” said Punjab coach, Thomas about Manoj. “I have many juniors in the side and this match they have proved they can play as a team,” added the coach of the side for which this was the first win in four encounters. However, one department which the coach will have to work is the free-throw, as they failed to find the target in as many as four of the five they garnered during the game.

“Yes will have to work I don’t want to name the player, but we will work on this,” said coach Thomas.

Haryana were trailing 53-73 points at the end of the third session, but the last session onslaught by Punjab saw they face huge defeat  by  34 points.

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