Pro Kabaddi League Season 5: Gujarat Fortunegiants coach gets emotional after win against Patna Pirates
On Sunday, Gujarat Fortunegiants emerged winners in the battle of Pro Kabaddi's elite. Up against an ultra-attacking Patna Pirates, Gujarat stamped their authority with some sublime defending.
Fortunegiants coach Manpreet Singh, who is an ex-Patna Pirates player himself, was extremely emotional after his side's victory.
"We have just beaten Patna Pirates, the two-time champions, and qualified for the play offs. I am extremely happy. We can now rest after a long time. We are now a family, I cannot put (it) into words."
Heading into the business end of season 5, Manpreet believes that there will be no easy matches from now on. He reckons his side will have to be ready to face the music every time they take the mat.
"From now on, none of the matches will be one-sided. I believe all the matches will be closely contested with just 2-3 points difference. We have to be prepared for this and plan on how we must play in the final 3-4 minutes when the scores are tied," he said.
Gujarat's coach suggested that he will have to plan certain things even before the players enter the mat. He suggesting that who will raid when has to be made clear to his players before the match starts.
"We have to plan who to save and which player to use during our final raids. It's all about keeping calm during pressure," Manpreet stated.
Unlike previous seasons, this year, the league has produced multiple closely contested encounters. Teams have been within touching distance of each other even with seconds to spare.
Manpreet believes that a change in the composition of the league has led to a change in the dynamic of every single team. With 12 teams vying for the trophy this season, the race to secure quality players was intense.
The upshot is that none of the teams now can be termed much superior to the others. Every side has its limitations, and opposition teams are well aware of this fact.
"In the first few seasons, all the players had specialized defenders and raiders. Now this season, certain teams have good raiders but not good defenders.
"Some have great defenders but bad raiders. Some don't have corner defenders while some players have suffered from injuries. That is why the matches are so close this season," Manpreet added.
With 77 points in 20 matches, Gujarat have succesfully entered the play offs in their debut season. That is a commendable feat, and it's no wonder their coach is so happy.