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PKL 2019 | Haryana Steelers played well after they paid heed to my words, asserts Rakesh Kumar

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PKL

PKL 2019 | Haryana Steelers played well after they paid heed to my words, asserts Rakesh Kumar

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SportsCafe Desk

09/24/2019

Haryana Steelers coach Rakesh Kumar, while appreciating his team’s performance, has said that his boys made mistakes earlier but were quick to recover after he talked to them during the timeout. He also talked about Dharmaraj Cheralathan’s recovery and why he wasn’t playing in the match.

Haryana Steelers started strong and worked on carrying that momentum throughout the game. Hence they won by a five-point margin as both their departments worked and got them this crucial victory. Despite inflicting an all-out early in the game, they were not able to hold on to the lead for long and by the first half ended, the lead remained of only two points.

They regain their lead in the second half where they inflicted two more all-outs on the Pirates and were able to gain a lead despite Pardeep Narwal’s consistent performance. 

“We did not want to be complacent. Even if we lost two points today and got a tie it would not have done. This win was necessary for us. The only thing I told the team was to not concede multi-point raids. We made that mistake earlier and then I took a time-out and told the team to focus on this aspect. The team played well after that and paid heed to my words. Vikash, Prashanth Rai, and the defence, all played well,” Haryana coach Rakesh Kumar said in the post-match press conference.

The difference between the two teams came in defence and all-out points. The defence, despite missing skipper Dharmaraj Cheralathan, kept themselves composed and reduced the advance tackles and most of their mistake was towards the end. The highest score in defence was by Ravi Kumar who scored three tackle points and even had four unsuccessful tackle attempts. 

“He is not really injured. He just had a slight muscle pull. He wanted to come back in this match but I refused because we are in a good position and we will require his experience going forward.  Since it is a small injury it is best to let it recover. It is only because of my prompting that he did not play. Otherwise he is completely fit,” Rakesh said when asked about an update on Cheralathan. 

Vikas Kandola performed for the team once again and scored 13 raid points he was well supported by Prashanth Kumar Rai who scored eight crucial raid points. Even though Patna’s raiding unit scored more than Haryana’s, they were not as impactful because their defence didn’t back them up. One such instance was when Pardeep scored four points in a super raid and in the very next raid, their defence gave away two points. 

“We did make an error in judgement but immediately after that Prashanth Rai got two points in his next raid and the match came back into our hands. The defence played well too. Two of our raiders were on the mat so we knew we were in a good position.” Vikas Kandola said while talking about the four-point raid.

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