Defending champions SAI boys and Haryana girls clinched the 47th Junior National Kabaddi Championships on Thursday, thus retaining their titles at Suryapet in Telangana.
The Sports Authority of India (SAI) boys team beat Uttar Pradesh 51-27 in the final at the SP Office grounds. Raider Meetu Mahender was the wrecker-in-chief with a 21-point Super 10. He was ably supported in the defence with High 5s from Jaideep Kuldeep (7 points) and Rahul Sethpal (5 points).
SAI had a solid Junior National Kabaddi Championship campaign. They steamrolled Bihar 87-24, Rajasthan 62-27 and Andhra CO 43-8 in the group stages.
In the quarter-finals, SAI beat Maharashtra 63-23 and Haryana 50-25 in the semi-finals.
The girls’ final was a closer affair. Haryana prevented a SAI-sweep by beating the SAI girls 43-35. Pooja D led the assault for the champions with a Super 10, scoring 20 raid points in the summit clash.
It was Pooja D’s fourth straight Super 10. She scored a total of 58 raid points in her five outings at the junior kabaddi nationals.
On their way to the title, Haryana girls beat Jammu & Kashmir 74-12 and Punjab 74-34 -- which saw four Haryana raiders scoring a Super 10 -- in the group stages.
Haryana defeated Rajasthan 52-20 in the quarters and Chandigarh 66-25 in the semis.
Players who performed well in the junior nationals will be on the radar for the Indian national kabaddi team.
Pro Kabaddi star Ajay Thakur, an Asian Games champion and a Kabaddi World Cup winner, was part of a six-member (three men and three women) selection committee for India probables.
Junior National Kabaddi Championship 2021 results
Semi-final 1: SAI beat Haryana 50-25
Semi-final 2: Uttar Pradesh beat Tamil Nadu 58-33
Final: SAI beat Uttar Pradesh 51-27
Semi-final 1: Haryana beat Chandigarh 66-25
Semi-final 2: SAI beat Maharashtra 38-32
Final: Haryana beat SAI: 43-35
Feature Image Courtesy: Pro Kabaddi