PKL 2019: Kandola and Sunil’s efforts give Haryana Steelers win over U.P. Yoddha
Haryana Steelers picked up their third successive Season 7 win after overcoming U.P. Yoddha by a 36-33 scoreline at the EKA Arena by TransStadia in Ahmedabad on Wednesday. Vikash Kandola starred for them in attack with a Super 10, while Sunil dominated in defence and picked up a High 5.
U.P. 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 U.P. Yoddha’s defence. They enforced the first All-Out of the game on U.P. 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. U.P. 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 U.P. 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 U.P. Yoddha to just two men on the court. But U.P. 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 U.P. Yoddha in the closing stages and held their nerve to register a three-point win.
U.P. Yoddha –
Best Raider – Shrikant Jadhav
Best Defender – Sumit
Haryana Steelers –
Best Raider – Vikash Kandola
Best Defender – Sunil