Tamil Thalaivas coach J Udaya Kumar appreciated V Ajith Kumar’s performance and said that he has immense potential and skills and there is a lot of him that is yet to be seen. Ajith scored his career-best of 18 points in the match which helped Tamil Thalaivas tie the game against Puneri Paltan.
Tamil Thalaivas were lagging behind during most parts of the game against Puneri Paltan due to their usual errors, especially in the defence. The defence conceded a super raid in the sixth minute of the game which eventually led to their all-out and them finishing the first half six points below the Paltan. However, the second-half saw them save an all-out five times and four of those raids were by Ajith Kumar. In all four raids, he not only ousted a player but also scored a bonus and his team didn’t widen the gap with the all-out.
“Ajith has immense potential and skill. He’s been immense for us and we believe there’s more to come. There are certain aspects of his game that he improve and fine tune further,” coach Udaya Kumar said in the post-match press conference.
Even though the result was their best effort, the fact remains that the Thalaivas have not able to win in their last nine encounters. In this match as well, their defence didn’t perform upto expectations and gave away points easily with advance tackle attempts. The highest scorer in defence was a raider, Shabbeer Bapu with three tackle points.
“Ajith (Kumar) was outstanding tonight. To score a career-high in such a tough game was incredible. But, I'm not happy with the performance. We're repeating mistakes that we have identified and worked on. We are making errors while tackling when they have a man or maybe two left on the mat. We need to rectify these,” coach said about the match.
While youngster Ajith scored 18 points in 19 raids, the other players were struggling. Rahul Chaudhari only managed to score four points, three raid and one defence point. Whereas, Mohit Chhillar and Manjeet Chhillar failed to score any point and Ran Singh scored one. So, none of their experienced players was able to work for the team.
“The tempo in kabaddi is at an all-time high. These younger players are so quick and so strong, agile as well. The senior players are finding it difficult to cope with the pace that these guys bring to the game. So the seniors players need to step up their fitness levels if they want to continue playing in vivo Pro Kabaddi,” coach Udaya said when asked if kabaddi has become a young players' game.