Defensively-brilliant, UP Yoddha edge out Bengaluru Bulls 35-33
UP Yoddha handed a second consecutive defeat to Bengaluru Bulls after overcoming them 35-33 to clinch the 10th spot in the league standings. Yoddha outwitted and overpowered Bulls by 2 points in a thrilling climax, summing up the closely-fought match at the EKA Arena by TransStadia in Ahmedabad on Monday.
To follow live scores with commentary please click on the link: Pro Kabaddi Live commentary and score updates
Watch match highlights: Bengaluru Bulls lose back to back matches | UP Yoddha overpowered Bulls
Bengaluru Bulls drew first blood as Pawan Sehrawat and Right Cover, Mohit Sehrawat combined to bring down Monu Goyat. After Rohit Kumar's Bonus Point for the Bulls, Shrikant Jadhav capitalized with a point on a weak Ankle-Hold by Sumit Singh. Bulls upped the pace of the game in their favor quickly, with Pawan Sehrawat getting 2 points from a couple of successful raids and also being brilliant in the defensive department - downing Surender Gill with a brilliant Ankle-Hold and brilliantly dashing Shrikant Jadhav off the mat - as they darted off to a 5-1 lead within first 3 minutes of the First Half.
UP Yoddha's prolific raider, Monu Goyat led his team's response in some style to the rapid offensive lodged in by Bengaluru Bulls in the first 3 minutes. Monu engaged and brought down Bulls' captain, Rohit Kumar in a brilliant Super Tackle and following that, reduced Bulls' lead to just a point - dismissing main man Pawan and Left Corner, Aman. Both the teams' defensive units fared well, fending off Raids from their oppositions until UP Yoddha gradually gained the upper hand in the 15th minute - when Bulls were pushed to a possible, All-Out with just 2 men on the mat. Shrikant Jadhav skipped off from Amit Sheoran, leaving Pawan Sehrawat as the only player left in play. In his Subsequent raid, Pawan managed to get a Bonus Point before getting pinned down by an excellent Chain-Thigh Hold from Sumit and Surender Gill, inflicting the first All-Out of the match and leveling the scores 13-13.
With just over 3 minutes left on the clock for the end of First Half, both teams resorted to cautious play with both ultimately getting a couple of points through Raids and Tackles apiece. UP Yoddha's leading defender and young Left Corner, Sumit inched closer to a High 5 racking up 4 Tackle Points as Bulls' high-scoring Pawan Sehrawat could not find much support yet again as the First Half ended on level terms, 15-15.
The Second Half started with both - UP Yoddha and Bengaluru Bulls blanking with a pair of empty raids each, following which Bulls went into a slender lead when Sumit Singh executed a successful Do or Die Raid dismissing Mohsen and Mahender Singh resumed his fine defensive display, bringing down Shrikant Jadhav who managed to get a Bonus Point. Soon after, Bulls' skipper Rohit Kumar was dashed off the mat by Amit Narwal who in process scampered off the mat too, drawing a point apiece putting the score at 17-18.
4 minutes into the Second Half, Mohsen Maghsoudloujafari's quickfire Do or Die Raid raid saw him snatch a Bonus Point and dismiss Ashu, pushed UP Yoddha in the lead 19-18 for the first time on the night. Following yet another crucial Do or Die Raid which saw Shrikant Jadhav dodge past and dismiss the in-form Mahender Singh and a couple of brilliant raids from the prolific Monu Goyat, UP Yoddha inflicted a second All-Out on Bengaluru Bulls wherein Shrikant latched in an excellent Thigh-Hold on Bulls' last man - captain, Rohit Kumar. The second All-Out of the match saw UP Yoddha cruise to a 6-point lead over Bulls at 27-21.
Bengaluru Bulls' raiding charges led by Pawan Sehrawat were being dealt with very well by the settled rhythm of UP Yoddha's defense. Halfway through the Second Half Pawan Sehrawat ousted Sumit, reaching the milestone of successfully registering 350 raid touch points in Vivo Pro Kabaddi. UP Yoddha's defensive and raiding departments were working in tandem as two of their raiding trio's - Shrikant and Monu kept getting in the Raid Points, keeping a healthy 5-point lead over Bulls.
As expected of the Bengaluru Bulls' ability to damage at the death, Pawan Sehrawat strung up a series of effective raids to cut the deficit down to 4 points, reaching yet another Super 10 in the process. Bulls seemed to regain some momentum after Pawan further notched 2 points, followed by Amit Sheoran, who rendered Monu Goyat's Do or Die Raid unsuccessful. UP Yoddha's skipper Nitesh Kumar ensured his side lead intact through a couple of back to back crucial Tackles. Soon after, Left Cover Sumit locked down on Pawan with a brilliant solo Tackle, recording his High 5 on the night.
Bengaluru Bulls' captain, Rohit Kumar dismissed Ashu Singh in his 500th successful Raid in Vivo Pro Kabaddi, to make it a slender situation of a 1-point game with over a minute to go. Following that, Shrikant Jadhav kept his cool, capitalizing on an onrushing Mahender Singh to grab a point in the final raid of the match, giving UP Yoddha their second win of the campaign - a 35-33 victory over Bengaluru Bulls. This outcome has pushed UP Yoddha to the 10th spot in the league standings.
Match Preview: Bengaluru Bulls keen to bounce back against UP Yoddha
Bengaluru Bulls will be all set to get back to winning ways right after their narrow defeat against Haryana Steelers when they would take on UP Yoddha at the EKA Arena by TransStadia in Ahmedabad on Monday.
UP Yoddha are winless in their past 3 matches, summing up to only one victory in six matches so far in Vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 7, and will be eager to notch a second win of their campaign.
Meanwhile, Bengaluru Bulls will be looking to bounce back immediately after losing by a slim margin to Haryana Steelers.
UP Yoddha's raiding triumvirate comprising of Shrikant Jadhav, Monu Goyat and Rishank Devadiga will have up their ante and rack up the points to break their current spell of inconsistent performances as a raiding unit so far in this season.
With 22 Raid Points so far, Monu Goyat has proved to be the side's most prolific raider so far. After making a comeback from an injury, veteran Rishank Devadiga too will be looking to settle in his rhythm of consistency alongside Monu. Skipper and last season's Tackle Points centurion, Nitesh Kumar has been crucial in the campaign so far but will be looking to hit the consistency patch along with
Left Corner, Sumit who has been an impressive individual for UP Yoddha this season with 17 Tackle Points.
On the other hand, defending champions Bengaluru Bulls will be expected to charge back to winning ways starting with a victory over UP Yoddha. Pawan Sehrawat had a relatively quiet performance in the previous match as skipper, Rohit Kumar recorded a Super 10 in the previous match, subsequently achieving the milestone of 600 Raid Points in Vivo Pro Kabaddi. Bulls' defense has been a cohesive unit so far. Defensive mainstay, Mahender Singh leads this season's Super Tackles tally this season with 5. With their raiding unit efficient at the closing stages of the matches, the defense, relatively, has not been so. Amit Sheoran and Saurabh Nandal must lodge in the required support in defense to thwart out any last-moment performance lapses against the raiding trident of UP Yoddha.
Head to Head: UP Yoddha vs Bengaluru Bulls