Pro Kabaddi League 2017 Season 5: Jaipur's Manjeet Chhillar unimpressed by Rahul Chaudhari's recent form
Haryana Steelers coach Ranbir Singh Khokhar decided to rest both his corner defenders, Mohit Chhillar and Surender Nada for their final home game and with two of their key players missing from the squad, the Steelers had a herculean task on their hands.
They eventually had enough in their arsenal as they secured a 27-27 draw against Jaipur Pink Panthers in Thursday's Pro Kabaddi League encounter. In doing so, Haryana now temporarily find themselves at the top of Zone A, having played two more matches than Gujarat.
The Panthers, on the other hand, played out their first draw of Season 5 and only have themselves to blame for a mediocre performance, apart from Nitin Rawal, who scored 12 points on the night and was by far the best raider of the match.
The Patna Pirates and Telugu Titans are scheduled once again lock horns in Ranchi tomorrow and Jaipur captain, Manjeet Chhillar spoke about the rivalry brewing between two of the league's top raiders, Pardeep Narwal and Rahul Chaudhari.
"It all depends on who is lucky, I've played against both, I sometimes win and sometimes I lose. It's not only Rahul and Pardeep, there are several other good raiders as well."
"Whenever I've played against Rahul, he has managed to score only 1-2 points against me. He couldn't score much against me. I don't think he has ever been able to beat me recently," he said.
Speaking on their result, Jaipur's coach Balwan Singh reckons nothing has been decided yet and there is a long way to go. He refused to comment on Haryana's decision to bench Mohit and Surender.
"The destination is now far away but our chances are getting better. I don't know why their coach rested Mohit and Surender, it is their strategy. I don't criticize anyone. They proved they are good without them," he said.
With four losses in ten games, the Panthers will need to pull their socks up if they have ambitions of securing a playoff spot this season. They currently find themselves in fifth position and have the worst score difference in Zone A.
Captain Manjeet Chhillar returned to the starting line up after an injury lay off. However, he failed to make an impact against Haryana and managed to score just two points.
Jaipur, as a whole, couldn't score a single tackle point in the first half. As a result, the Steelers didn't completely feel the absence of their two star corner defenders.