Jaipur Pink Panthers captain Jasvir Singh continued his red hot form and found support in Shabeer Bapu as both combined to give the home side their second victory of the season by beating Bengal Warriors 36 -33 in an amazing match. The two men were ably supported by Rajesh Narwal and young Tushar Patil as they saw off a competitive Bengal Warriors in another exciting contest of Star Sports Pro Kabaddi.
Jasvir Singh, who resembles former Indian opener Virender Sehwag, in both his gait and swagger, started the proceedings in Sehwag style by removing one of the corners of Bengal Warriors with his first raid. After having started with failed raid attempts in the last two games, Jasvir was visibly overjoyed to open the account for his team.
In the 6th minute, Bengal’s Monu Gayat sent Rajesh Narwal out and reinforced his emerging image as the new poster boy of Pro Kabaddi. But another young turk from the Panthers’ side, Tushar Patil wasn’t to be left behind and scored an important raid to see the scores level 6-6. Warriors’ Nitin Madne’s Super Raid in the 12th minute proved crucial and extended the difference between the teams for the first time by more than two points.
The Warriors had made the war cry and flew past the Panthers with a 4 point lead apart from coming close to inflicting an All Out. However, Jasvir Singh was on a different level in the home leg and despite beng the last man standing, he saved his team from an imminent all out with an excellent raid. Mahipal Narwal added to the captain’s efforts to bring back the point deficit to one with 5 minutes left on the clock for the half time.
However, the same situation returned to haunt the home side just seconds before the half time whistle, and this time the man in the dock was Shabeer Bapu. The raider, who was having an ordinary season till now, atoned for his poor past performances with a Super Raid that put the Panthers in lead going into the half time, albeit by a single point. Bapu finished the first half on a high with 7 points, 4 of which came from some amazing tackles early on.
Half time - Jaipur Pink Panthers – 17 Bengal Warriors - 16
Bengal defender Girish Ernak got the better of the first half’s hero when he returned for a do-or die raid and Bengal got third time lucky when they finally managed to inflict the all out on Jaipur Pink Panthers in the 24th minute.
Two minutes later, however, Jasvir Singh made amends for his team by taking out Ernak and Mane with a superlative raid and bringing the scores back to level when he fetched two points. 3 minutes later, Jasvir scored another two raid points to go past 10 raid points in the match and send tension levels soaring in the Bengal camp.
The game seemed to be heading to a nail biting finish when the official timeout in the 29th minute was taken as teams were separated by a single point. But Captain Jasvir Singh was unstoppable and got his team another two points, but in the process hurt his shoulder.
After Shabeer Bapu and Jasvir Singh had made the Warriors’ defenders dance to their tunes, it was the turn of Rajesh Narwal to come to the party. And he absolutely gatecrashed the party with a 4 pointer in the 31st minute that left Bengal All Out. But just like his captain, even Narwal hurt his shoulder during his brilliant effort.
But a resolute Bengal Warriors were in no mood to give up and Nilesh Shinde was leading them from the front in this renewed challenge. Monu Gayat played the perfect supporting cast to Shinde as both helped them to edge past the Panthers with 3 minutes to go in the match. The score line read a tense 31-30 in favor of Bengal and it was anyone’s game from there on.
The clincher for the Panthers came in the form of a super tackle in the penultimate minute. Shabeer Bapu then ensured with two back to back successful raids that there was no last second jitters.Young Tushar Patil finished off things for Jaipur Pink Panthers to put them in the second spot as the crowd at Sawai Man Singh indoor stadium burst into celebrations.
Full time - Jaipur Pink Panthers – 36 Bengal Warriors - 33