A complete performance from the raiders and defenders helped Tamil Thalaivas beat U.P. Yoddha 39-33 in match 33 of Pro Kabaddi Season 8 at the Sheraton Grand, Whitefield, Bengaluru. 

Manjeet (7 points) and substitute Ajinkya Pawar (6 points) were impressive among the raiders for Thalaivas while defenders Sagar (5 points) and Surjeet Singh (3 points) backed them up efficiently. Surender Gill scored 14 points for U.P. Yoddha although his side ended up on the losing side. 

The first half belonged completely to the team in yellow. Thalaivas dominated the mat with their raiders Manjeet, K. Prapanjan and Bhavani Rajput finding points easily. Yoddha’s much-famed corner duo of Nitesh Kumar and Sumit struggled against the lanky Tamil raiders. 

At the other end, Pardeep Narwal had yet another sub-par performance, moving gingerly and getting easily trapped by the defenders. Thalaivas got their first all-out in the 11th minute to open a six-point gap and went to dominate the closing stages as well. Tamil defenders Surjeet Singh and Sagar had 2 points in a half that ended 21-10 in their favour.

In the second half, two successive Super Tackles from the combination of Ashu Singh and Shubham Kumar suddenly reduced Thalaivas’ lead. Surender Gill then got his act together with a two-point raid. In fact, Surender Gill donned the role of the lead raider while Pardeep struggled to help Yoddha clinch an important all-out in the eighth minute of the half. He secured his Super 10 two minutes later to reduce Thalaivas’ lead to just two points.

Coach Udaya Kumar brought in Ajinkya Pawar for Thalaivas and his quick raid points directed pressure back on Yoddha. Sagar clinched his High 5 in defence as Thalaivas secured their second all-out with four minutes remaining. They opened an eight-point lead in the closing stages, but Pardeep Narwal produced a three-point Super Raid in the final minute to reduce the margin to five. The raid ensured Yoddha got at least one point from the match. During the course of the match, Pardeep Narwal added another feather in his cap by crossing the 1200-raid point in Pro Kabaddi. 

Featured photo: Pro Kabaddi