PKL 2017 | UP Yodha and Tamil Thalaivas play out a pulsating tie

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PKL 2017 | UP Yodha and Tamil Thalaivas play out a pulsating tie

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SportsCafe Desk


Riding on spectacular performances from Rishank Devadiga (16 points) UP started the first half and became the instant favorites to win the game. However, Tamil Thalaivas skipper Ajay Thakur single-handedly brought his team back into the game and helped his team finish the match at 33-33.

Rishank Devadiga’s Super ten hands UP Yodha a commanding first half lead

Tamil Thalaivas won the toss and invited UP to raid first who started off with an empty raid. However, Rishank Devadiga continued his splendid run in the tournament and took out three Tamil Thalaivas players in his very first raid before taking out three more players in his following two raids to take the score to  6-2 in the Yodha’s favour. On the other hand, Prapanjan kept the scoreboard ticking with successful raids and kept an all-out at bay by reviving his teammates with crucial raid points. However, Jeeva Kumar took the Thalaivas raider out to reduce the visitors to just two players and Devadiga followed it up with a two-point raid as the home team raced to a nine point lead at 13-4 by inflicting the first all-out of the game on Tamil Thalaivas. Though Thalaivas skipper Ajay Thakur managed to pull one back for his side a concentration lapse by his defence nullified his efforts as Devadiga returned with another point for the Yoddha’s. The Thalaivas defence finally caught hold of Devadiga before Ajay Thakur scored a raid-point at the cost of UP skipper Nitin Tomar to reduce the deficit to 8-15. With Devadiga and Tomar out the game opened up for the visitors, but they failed to capitalise on the situation and Devadiga made them pay as he reached his super ten with another successful raid. However, a successful super tackle by the Thalaivas players on Devadiga helped them finish the first half with momentum on their side as the scoreboard read 19-11 in the home team’s favour.

Tamil Thalaivas mount an incredible comeback to force a thrilling tie 

After the break, Ajay Thakur put the running hand touch to great use to fetch a point for his side. Nitin Tomar then entered the Thaliavas half to salvage a point in the do-or-die raid but failed as the visitors dashed him out off the mat. Ajay Thakur and the Thalivas defence combined to reduce the home team’s lead to 19-16 while reducing the Yoddha’s to just a single player. Thalaivas then completed the all-out by stopping Santosh in his tracks to level the score at 19-19 with UP Yoddha’s failing to score any points in first five minutes of the second half. On the other hand, Ajay Thakur continued to wreak havoc on the mat and with three consecutive successful raids that helped his team take a 23-21 lead in the game. However, Nitin Tomar and Devadiga swung the game back in the home team’s favour with two points to take a slender 26-24 lead. Ajay Thakur and the Thalaivas defence combined once again to bring the game back in the balance.  With five minutes to go, UP had a 2 two point lead at 29-27 thanks to skipper Nitin Tomar’s two bonus-point raids. But the neck and neck battle continued as Thaliavas caught hold of Nitin Tomar before Ajay Thakur reduced the home side to a single player and reaching his super ten in the process and also taking the score to 31-29 in his team’s favour. UP’s all-rounder Sagar Krishna’s successful raid then paved the way for a super tackle on Ajay Thakur which turned the match on its head as the home team once again led with the score at 32-31. Both the teams then adopted a defensive approach and banked on do-or-die raids, but Devadiga rose to the occasion once again and produced a memorable raid to help the home team take a 33-31 lead in the dying minutes of the game. However, there was one more twist left in the game as the Thalivas managed to once again and finish the match on level terms with the final score reading 33-33.

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