Pro Kabaddi 2019 Semifinal 2, Bengal Warriors vs U Mumba: Warriors enter final after winning a thriller
Abhishek Singh, from the losing side, became the best raider of the night after picking up 11 points. Sukesh Hedge had a commendable game for the Bengal-based franchise and garnered eight points in 18 raids. On the defensive front, Rinku Narwal and Surinder Singh earned four tackle points respectively.
Bengal Warriors: K. Prapanjan, Sukesh Hegde, Baldev Singh, Jeeva Kumar, Rinku Narwal, Esmaeil Nabibakhsh, Mayur Shivtarkar
U Mumba: Fazel Atrachali, Abhishek Singh, Arjun Deshwal, Athul MS, Young Chang Ko, Surender Singh, Sandeep Narwal
Abhishek Singh started the second semi-final of PKL 2019 with a running hand-touch on Mayur Shivtarkar, which was then followed by a commendable dash by Surinder Singh on Esmaeil Nabibakhsh.
10 minutes into the incredibly slow-paced game, both teams were tied at 7-7. Despite a close contest, U Mumba looked more put together than the Warriors, which might have happened due to the absence of Maninder Singh, who sustained an injury in his last match.
Nabibaksh filled in for Maninder and pitched in quite a few points for his franchise. In the 15th minute, the Warriors inflicted the first all-out of the night on the Mumbai-based franchise.
The conclusion of the first half saw the Warriors edge past with an 18-12 lead. A smashing raid by K. Prapanjan kick-started the second half for the Warriors on a powerful note.
The commencement of the other half saw U Mumba make a gradual comeback as the whole squad started pitching in with points. Bengal traced the improvement of the Mumbai-based franchise and avoided unnecessary errors.
The 26th minute saw the former Tamil Thalaivas player, Sukesh Hegde, perform a dazzling super-raid, sending out Fazel Atrachali, Surinder Singh, Ajinkya Kapre and Young Chang Ko off the mat in the blink of an eye.
With just 10 minutes remaining in the game, a raid by Abhishek Singh directed an unfortunate all-out on the Warriors, which also reduced the massive score difference to ten points.
Ajinkya Kapre, who was playing his first-ever season, initiated a mind-boggling four-point raid, which dissolved the lead super quick. Singh, courtesy a beautiful game, completed his super ten successfully, which was then followed by an all out on Bengal.
U Mumba, despite a sloppy start, was just a single point behind the Warriors, with just one minute remaining on the clock. Ultimately, the Bengal Warriors defeated U Mumba 37-35 and became the second team to qualify for the PKL 2019 Final, which will take place on the 19th of October, and they will be up against Dabang Delhi.
The soft-spoken Bengal Warriors' coach B.C Ramesh was absolutely thrilled during the post-match conference. He also shed some light on Maninder's injury.
"I had confidence in my team that they'll win the match against Mumba tonight. The whole team is happy with the win and so am I. We missed Maninder tonight but hopefully, he'll get back to full health and play the finals."
"Our team could have won with a larger lead but our team gave away four points to Ajinkya Kapre. However, our whole team put up a brilliant game tonight."
Sukesh, who was the star player of the night for Bengal Warriors, was happy that his side booked a place in the final and provided his views on the match.
"The match was quite difficult but the team did a good job. Our team initially had to face some problems regarding the corners, but now everything is set. Bengal is in the finals for the first time and we'll try our best to win against Dabang Delhi."Published 17 Oct 2019, 11:24 IST