Pro Kabaddi 2019, Match 50: Rishank Devadiga says 'surprise package' Surender Gill upset Jaipur's defence
U.P. Yoddha caused a massive upset on Monday evening in Pro Kabaddi 2019 when they defeated table toppers Jaipur Pink Panthers 31-24 to register their third win of the season and hand Jaipur just their second loss.
Yoddha's raiders set up the win for them early as Surender Gill and Shrikant Jadhav starred scoring 7 raid points each. Rishank Devadiga also chipped in with 4 raid points. They got off to a fast start taking a 16-10 lead into half-time and then controlled the pace of the game in the second to nullify Jaipur's attempt at a comeback.
Speaking after the game Rishank spoke about how they had game planned to upset Jaipur's defence, especially their lethal corner combo of Sandeep Dhull and Amit Hooda.
"We have been wanting to use Surender Gill for a long time. He has been performing very well in practice and he is very good in Do or Die raids. We have decided to give him lots of opportunities to showcase his skill and he delivered. We wanted to throw him in as a surprise package which maybe Jaipur's defence would not have seen too much of and it worked," said Rishank.
Yoddha captain Nitesh Kumar was also complimentary of his raiders saying,
"Our raiders set up the game beautifully for us in the first half and then in the second we had to do our bit and get the tackles at the right time. This is a very good win for us against a top team."
He also mentioned that the return of Rishank helps him in his captaincy as well.
"Rishank is a very senior and experienced player, so it is nice to have him on the mat. When he is present, he allows me to be a little relaxed since he is able to control and guide the raiders and I can focus on the defence", added Nitesh.
Meanwhile losing coach L Srinivas Reddy was not too down on the result despite the big margin of defeat and ruled out complacency as a reason for the loss.
"No, it was not overconfidence", replied Reddy when asked if his team had taken U.P. Yoddha lightly. "We don't underestimate any team and especially U.P. since it's a very balanced team. Today our two corners made lot of mistakes and even the central defenders made mistakes. Our defence was bad in all areas."
Reddy added, "We conceded the lead to them which was a big issue for us. After that they played safe and didn't allow us to come close. I feel the raiders did alright, but because of our defensive mistakes we lost this game."
Asked about the second half comeback he said, "We did try to comeback. Deepak Hooda was superb, he was getting us points. But while we were getting single points, our defence gave away multi-point raids which proved crucial in the end."
Despite the loss Jaipur remain top of the table and next face the home team Tamil Thalaivas on Wednesday.
U.P. Yoddha move up to 8th place in the table and sit on 22 points.