Captain Vikash Kandola helped Haryana Steelers beat defending champions Bengal Warriors 46-29 on Day 6 in Pro Kabaddi League Season 8’s Rivalry Week on Friday, February 4.
The first match of the Triple Panga night proved to be a one-sided affair with the Steelers inflicting three All Outs on Bengal. Vikash Kandola scored a Super 10 (10 points) and was supported well in the attack by Vinay (8 points) and Ashish (6 points).
It was another disappointing match for Bengal Warriors despite their captain Maninder Singh scoring a Super 10 (13 points). He once again lacked the support to convert the performances into wins for the Warriors. Coach B.C. Ramesh will need a fresh plan to ensure the Bengal team remain with a chance to defend their title at the end of this month.
The teams traded blows in a high-scoring and fiercely competitive first half. Bengal coach B.C. Ramesh put raider Anand for Sukesh Hedge in the starting 7 while Haryana’s coach Rakesh Kumar benched Surender Nada for Akshay. The game didn’t have a high-scoring start with both the teams weighing each other up. The first big move came in the 16th minute when Vikash Kandola orchestrated a 4-point Super Raid.
That helped the Steelers get the momentum and clinch an All Out with 3 minutes remaining to open a 3-point lead. But Bengal immediately staged a comeback with substitute Sukesh Hegde picking up valuable raid points. His 19th-minute raid took out Haryana’s cover defenders Mohit and Jaideep. The first half ended with the scores level at 19-19.
Both teams kept matching each other in the early minutes of the second half. Vinay added more sharpness to the Haryana raiding unit while Surender Nada was brought in to stabilise the left corner. Bengal's Maninder Singh kept picking up valuable raid points as he raced to a Super 10. But Haryana captain Vikash Kandola clinched a 2-point raid (+2 for All Out) to remove all the Bengal men from the mat with 8 minutes remaining. That extended the Steelers’ lead to 10 points, but Bengal immediately reduced the margin with a 3-point Super Raid by Maninder Singh.
Vishal Mane was a weakling in the Bengal defence and the Steelers kept picking easy points off him. Vikash Kandola picked his Super 10 as Haryana defenders helped the team clinch another All Out with 2 minutes remaining. The lead proved too much for Bengal to make a comeback as Haryana secured a win that will help them in the tight race for a playoff spot.
Featured photo: Pro Kabaddi