Both Jaipur Pink Panthers and Bengal Warriors were coming from a win and were all set to lock horns with each other on a #MahaPanga match day at the PKL 2019. Playing at the Dome NSCI in Mumbai, both looked out for a victory. With Deepak Niwas Hooda taking the mat against Maninder Singh, the match was expected to be a heated battle.
Read to find out how the anticipated clash between the Kolkata-based franchise and Junior Bachchan's team proceeded, with Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan cheering for them.
Bengal Warriors: Maninder Singh, Baldev Singh, Mohammad Nabibakhsh, Naveen Narwal, Jeeva Kumar, K. Prapanjan, Rinku Narwal
Jaipur Pink Panthers: Deepak Niwas Hooda, Nilesh Salunke, Sandeep Dhull, Sunil Siddhgavali, Amit Hooda, Deepak Narwal, Vishal Lather
Jaipur Pink Panthers won the toss and chose the court.
Maninder Singh started for the Warriors and returned empty-handed. K. Prapanjan fished out a two-pointer from the rivals. A swift Mani also scored a point for his squad.
In a fierce tackle, "Ladka khele beautiful" as told by commentator Sunil Taneja, Sandeep Dhull caught hold of the brilliant Nabibakhsh and scored the first point for the Panthers. It was a slow-paced battle and after eight minutes, the score 3-6 was tilted in Bengal's direction.
With a top-class dubki from Prapanjan, he increased the Warriors' lead by 4 points. With a beautiful two-pointer by Deepak Hooda, he scored for Jaipur while being appreciated by Abhishek Bachchan.
In the 18th minute, the score was tied by 10-10, which was immediately dissolved by the Warriors as they grabbed the lead. At the half-time, the scoreboard read 14-10 in Bengal's favour.
The five-star all-rounder Deepak also completed his 800 points in the league right after the second-half commenced. Thanks to an applause-worthy tackle by Rinku Narwal, he dashed Deepak's hopes to bag a point for the Warriors.
Bengal Warriors took a review in the 26th minute of the match, which they, unfortunately, lost. Due to a rookie tackle error by Hooda, he gave an easy point to Maninder, plus the bonus which he took earlier. The match looked pretty low scoring since the very first raid.
The Warriors then started pouncing on Deepak Narwal like a true tiger, sending him off the mat. With just ten minutes left in the heated face-off, the scoreboard displayed 20-16, leading in Bengal's direction.
Completing eight defense points, baby-faced Sandeep Dhull proved that he was here to stay. He contributed heavily to the defense. Reduced to just three players, Bengal inflicted a super-tackle on Deepak Narwal.
With another beautiful super-tackle, Nabibakhsh caught hold of Deepak, despite his warrior-like efforts. In the 37th minute of the encounter, Jaipur took a review in favour of Hooda, which was deemed unsuccessful.
After a turn of events, Jaipur inflicted a mind-blowing all-out on the Warriors in the last minute of the match, emerging triumphant with the score 27-25. Ajinkya Pawar turned the match by 360 degrees for the Pink Panthers in the second last raid.
Despite his team's loss, Maninder Singh completed his 450 raid-points milestone in the dying minutes of the face-off. Nevertheless, both teams played well, given that the match changed its direction in the last minute.Published 27 Jul 2019, 22:13 IST