Puneri Paltan’s coach Anup Kumar, while appreciating Nitin Tomar’s performance, said that the team needs similar solid performance performances from the star raider who scored 11 points yesterday. He also talked about the fan support and how that helped in motivating the team to perform better.
Puneri Paltan started their home leg with a win against Gujarat Fortunegiants with the scoreline of 43-33. Pune inflicted an all-out 8 minutes into the game as Nitin Tomar and their defence started scoring points from the word go. After the all-out they had a lead of eight points which didn’t diminish throughout the game. Nitin Tomar scored his first Super Ten of the season and he only got ousted once while raiding in the whole match.
“Very happy! The team needs this kind of performance from Nitin, the way he played with so much gusto. I spoke to him earlier in the afternoon well before the start of the match because he had a little niggle, and he said he would definitely play in the home leg. I told him only one thing, if you want to play then he has to go all out, so that your game and your quality is obvious to the public and the opposition. He said he would give it his all and play well, and he proved that,” Anup Kumar said while talking about Tomar’s performance.
The biggest positive that came out of the match was the defence's performance which was phenomenal. They scored 18 tackle points which was 10 more than the opposition and hence the point of difference between the two. Two players, skipper Surjit Singh and Balasaheb Jadhav, scored High Fives while Hadi Tajik (4) and Girish Ernak(3) provided them with appropriate support by scoring a combined 7 points.
“The defenders need to click, that's very important. The defender's role is to hold back the raider and the defence's performance today has been very good, I am very happy. If we play like this in the remaining matches, then we can easily qualify for the playoffs,” a delighted Anup answered.
As this was their first game, Pune would hope for similar all-round performances in the rest of the three matches as well.
“The team all-round played well; Balasaheb Jadhav, Surjeet Singh, Girish Ernak, Nitin... Pankaj Mohite had an up-and-down game, because he had a little pain in the head as he had got hurt in the previous match, but he still tried.
"Today was the home leg's first match, the crowd was with us in full support and maybe that's the reason why we played so well and won with such a good margin. We have three more matches remaining (in Pune), and if the audience keeps supporting the team like this, then we will play the remaining three matches just like this one,” Anup signed off.