Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018: India vs Pakistan, 5 Talking Points
Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018 got underway at the Al Wasl Sports Club in the city of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates as perennial rivals India and Pakistan faced off against each other in the opening clash.
The two neighbouring countries locked horns on the Kabaddi mat after quite a while as they looked to take the advantage in the group stage of the Kabaddi Masters Dubai. The tournament, which has been considered as the warm-up for the soon-to-follow Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The Pakistan side was led by their talismanic captain and all-rounder Nasir Ali, who has been a longstanding figure in the Pakistani Kabaddi team. Pakistani players came into this tournament on the back of the recently concluded Super Kabaddi League a month ago. Nasir Ali was the star of the tournament bagging the Man of the Series award with a huge tally of 68 points to his credit.
The Indian side was led by World Cup star performer and Tamil Thalaivas' lead raider Ajay Thakur and comprised of a host of Pro Kabaddi League stars. In the absence of India's former captain Anup Kumar, the responsibility lay on the shoulders of Thakur who was leading the side in his second tournament after the Asian Kabaddi Championships held in Iran, which Indian won beating the Republic of Korea in the final.
Indian team pulled off a great all-round performance owing to the heroics of captain Ajay Thakur to start the tournament on a high note as they beat rivals Pakistan with a final score of 36-20.
#1 Close start to the game as both sides defend strong
The two sides began the game on a strong note especially on the defensive side of things on the Kabaddi mat. The two corner pairs of the sides were holding the fort well and not allowing the raiders from the two sides to go on a rampage. Indian defenders Surender Nada and Mohit Chillar were their usual sturdy best as they did not allow the Pakistani raiders to get comfortable during their raids. Pakistani defense led by Nasir Ali and Wasim Sajjad also stood strong and did not allow the pair of Rahul Chaudhari and the 'Dubki King' Pardeep Narwal to gather easy points.