67th Senior Nationals Kabaddi Championships: Semi-Finals Preview
67th Senior Nationals Kabaddi Championships move into the last day of the 5-day event where just the semi-finals and finals remain.
Quarterfinals ended on 4th March 2020 where eight quality teams fought it out to make it to the semi-finals of the tournament.
Let us have a look at what's in store on the last day of the event and also the teams that will be fighting it out in the semi-finals to make it to final.
Semi-Final 1: Rajasthan vs Indian Railways
The hosts Rajasthan will be up against the heavyweight's Indian Railways in the semi-final 1 of the Senior Nationals Kabaddi Championships 2020.
Defending Champions Railways are coming into this match being unbeaten in the tournament where they have won all their games with big margin and ease. They beat Haryana in the quarterfinals with the score reading 44-26 to qualify into the semi-finals, in the pre-quarters they got the better of Chandigarh with scores of 45-35. Railways have been in great form in this tournament and have been riding success on the performances of Pawan Seharawat and Rohit Gulia in the raiding department and their defense has been coming good with the likes of Dharmaraj, Parvesh, Pahal, and Sunil. In the knock out games Vikas Kandolla looking fit and in great form for the defending champions who will be the next big threat to the hosts after Pawan.
The home team Rajasthan has been in good form throughout this tournament and has been getting immense support from the local fans here at Poornima University in Jaipur. Deepak Niwas Hooda has been leading his side very well to get the results in their favor, Deepak was not seen raiding much in the league stage but as the knockouts came he has been in great form overall in raiding as well as defending and has been getting points at regular intervals for his team. Other than Deepak it is Raju Lal Choudhary and Brijendra Choudhary who has been performing well for the home team. Hosts coming into this game after beating Maharashtra with scores of 47-34 in the quarter-finals and got better of Kerala Court with the score reading 53-33 which puts them in great space of mind to fight it out against one of the strongest sides in the tournament.
Railways will be hoping to see Pawan do his usual thing and come good for them to get the better of the home side and a lot of Railways success will depend on how they deal with Deepak Niwas Hooda. For Rajasthan, they will be hoping that Raju Lal Choudhary will come good against Pawan to keep Railways at bay.
Semi-Final 2: Services vs Uttar Pradesh
Last year runners up Services will be looking to change some fortunes and look to get the desired result this year as they will be facing Rahul Choudhary led Uttar Pradesh.
Services will be coming into this game being unbeaten in the 67th Senior Nationals Kabaddi Championships. Services beat Karnataka in the quarter-finals with scores reading 54-23 and beat Uttarakhand 43-14. Naveen Kumar has played a pivotal role in his team's success, he has been the lead raider for them and the team depends a lot on Naveen's success to win matches. In the defending department, they have players in the likes of Nitesh Kumar and Surjeet who have been in decent form in this tournament. They also have Rohit Kumar and Nitin Tomar who have been a bit scratchy from the start but have found form in bits and pieces, overall services look like a strong unit who will be looking forward to changing fortunes and go one step ahead and win the trophy, unlike last year where they bagged the runners up title.
Uttar Pradesh led by showman Rahul Choudhary has had a decent tournament and being lucky in certain stages. UP come into this game after defeating Bihar in a close encounter with the score reading 39-31 in the quarter-finals, in Pre-quarters they got the better of Tamil Nadu in a very tight game with the score reading 30-28 in the tiniest of margins. U Mumba's Abhishek Singh and Rohit Baliyan along with Rahul Choudhary have been key raiders for UP and they will be hoping that they come good.
Given Both teams, Services have a big advantage coming into this game as compared to UP as they have been beating teams with ease and consistency and UP will look to pull off an upset here to make it to the final.
Semi-Final 1: Indian Railways vs Jharkhand
Defending champions Indian Railways will be up against Jharkhand in the first Semi-Final of the 67th Senior Nationals Kabaddi Championships.
Indian Railways come into this game unbeaten in this tournament where they beat Goa in a one-sided encounter with the score reading 51-21 and they beat Punjab 31-26 in a close encounter. Railways have dominated in all games they have played in the tournament and will be looking to make to the finals again.
Talking about Jharkhand they have had a decent tournament where the only game they were beaten was against Haryana in the league stages. They beat Bihar in the quarter-finals in a close game with the score reading 26-21 and Uttar Pradesh in Pre-Quarters with a score of 33-27.
It will be interesting to see if Jharkhand can pull off an upset over the defending champions and make it to the finals.
Semi-Final 2: Haryana vs Himachal Pradesh
In the Semi-Final 2, Haryana will be locking horns against Himachal Pradesh which seems to be a cracker of a contest. Both teams are coming into this contest unbeaten and look in great form.
Last year runners up Haryana are looking in top-notch form as they beat the hosts Rajasthan with a score of 40-26 in the Quater-Finals and beat Delhi in a one-sided encounter with the score reading 38-21. Having dominated the tournament so far Haryana will look to continue this form and emerge as champions this time.
Talking about Himachal Pradesh, who has also been in great from where they won all their games so far. Himachal beat West Bengal in an easy game with a score of 41-21 in the Quarter-Finals and beat Chhattisgarh with a score of 32-20 which again turned out to be a one-sided encounter. Himachal would want to continue this momentum to make it to the finals and look to win the trophy.