Pro Kabaddi League 2018: UP Yoddha's Nitesh Kumar becomes first player to score 100 tackle points in a single season
What's the story?
UP Yoddha's dynamic right corner defender Nitesh Kumar's tremendous run this season earned him the distinction of becoming the first ever defender to notch up 100 tackle points in a single season of the Pro Kabaddi League.
Kumar achieved this feat with an ankle hold during the second qualifier of the ongoing edition of the league against the Gujarat Fortunegiants, when he pounced on the ankles of Sachin Tanwar to pick up his sixth tackle point of the night.
In case you didn't know
Nitesh Kumar represented the UP Yoddha in the previous edition of the league in which he played 19 matches and picked up just 47 tackle points. Prior to Kumar's staggering achievement, Haryana Steelers' Surender Nada held the record for the most tackle points in a single season, with 80 tackle points from season five.
Heart of the matter
Nitesh Kumar's form proved to be one of UP Yoddha's major driving factors that took them to the qualifiers for the first time in two seasons and with some clinical ankle holds from the right corner, earned praise from all corners for his top efforts.
Kumar started the season well with three tackle points in the Yoddha's first game against the Thalaivas and picked up his first 'High-5' against the Bengaluru Bulls.
With yet another 'High-5' against the Gujarat Fortunegiants, Kumar picked up 50 tackle points in just 12 matches and in the process, also climbed to the top of the tackle points table until he was dethroned by U Mumba's Fazel Atrachali.
However, 18 points from four games took Kumar back to the top and in Yoddha's final league stage match, Kumar picked up six tackle points and continued his form into the eliminator-1 against U Mumba where he exhibited his career-best show to pick up a whopping eight tackle points from the game.
A three-point show in the second eliminator took Kumar to 94 tackle points from 24 matches before he added six more points in UP's loss in the second qualifier to take his overall tally to 100 points from the season.
With UP Yoddha knocked out of the competition courtesy of a loss against the Fortunegiants in the second qualifier, all eyes will be on Nitesh Kumar in the local circuit, with the 21-year old sending across a wave of authority with his tremendous show all through the season.