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Pro Kabaddi League 2017 Season 5: Our strategy was to keep U Mumba under constant pressure, says Gujarat coach Manpreet Singh

469   //    16 Sep 2017, 14:34 IST

Sachin Parvez Bhainswal
The Fortunegiants' players executed to perfection to inflict a defeat on U MumbaIn the Zone A encounter between Gujarat Fortunegiants and former champions U Mumba at the Tana Bhagat Indoor Stadium in Ranchi on Friday, the former led the Mumbai franchise by just one point at the end of the first half. But Gujarat made sure that Anup Kumar’s men got no chance in the second half as they ran away to a 39-28 victory.

Gujarat coach Manpreet Singh was a satisfied man after the result. His half-time discussions with his boys brought about the turnaround as the Gujarat team returned to the mat, reenergized and ready to take the matters into their own hands.

“In the first half, our defence was not working properly. They conceded too many points which is why the match looked very close at the end of the first half. During half-time, I talked with the boys and explained them clearly where the Mumbai raiders were snatching points. I instructed (Mahendra) Rajput to dive in the second half and stop Kashiling (Adake) from taking away easy points.

The boys executed whatever I had asked them to do in the second half and the combination proved to be deadly for U Mumba.”

Manpreet spelt out that it was the pressure that got to the former champions in the end. And that is exactly what the Fortunegiants had intended to do.

“In kabaddi, pressure matters a lot. After winning a few matches, we tied our last match and lost a couple too before that. So, we had a lot to prove in this match. When such a match arrives, you cannot afford to put pressure on any particular player in your team. You simply cannot ask one particular team member to get two or four points for your team.

In contrast, when Mumbai made a rash decision to get Sachin, they started losing points. It went downhill from there and they lost their most dependable players. After that, pressure started mounting so much on them that they already lost the match at that juncture.

Our plan was to keep them under constant pressure and we achieved success tonight,” he explained.

This performance has undoubtedly filled them with immense confidence ahead of their second encounter with U Mumba in Ranchi as the washed out Mumbai match has been scheduled to be held in the Jharkhand capital on September 20. Manpreet has warned that they will look to erase out whatever creases they had in this match for an even more polished display on Wednesday.

“We have another encounter with U Mumba because the Mumbai leg match that got postponed has been scheduled in Ranchi. We shall plan even better for that.”

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A freelance journalist based in Kolkata who is a diehard Rafael Nadal fan. She is also extremely passionate about India’s progress in sports and hopes to throw light on India’s unsung sports heroes through her articles. When not screaming her lungs out in support of her favourite sports stars, she can be seen reading, watching movies or immersed in planning her next travel destination!
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