Coming into this match on the back of a loss to Bengal Warriors, the Titans’ cause was aided by exemplary display of defence from Vishal Bhardwaj.
When the pressure mounted, Vishal kept a cool head to tide over the difficulty. In the face of danger, the Titans defence didn’t panic and played with composure and confidence. With this win, the Titans improved its head-to-head record over Pirates to 7-6. This is Pirates’ second loss in four matches and its two-match winning run ended.
The tide turned decisively in the Titans’ favour late in the second-half when Vishal and Abozar alternately won crucial Super Tackles on Pardeep Narwal. The Pirate’s coach Rammeher Singh said his team’s raiding, which is supposed to be its strong suit, failed to perform to its potential.
“Pardeep getting out in those two Super Tackles was definitely a turning point. Pardeep had an off-day. And the Titans’ defence improved markedly in the second-half. Their defenders neutralised Pardeep’s threat. One of our defenders went for an advance tackle at a crucial juncture and it backfired,” rued Rammeher.
At the completion of first-half, Patna Pirates was leading Telugu Titans by three points at 17-14. It was the Titans that got off the blocks quickly taking a 4-0 lead before the Pirates got its act together and took the lead for the first time in the ninth minute when the lanky Manjeet won two raid points in a do-or-die raid. What was impressive about that raid was Manjeet nailed the two burly Iranian defenders in Abozar and Mohsen to make it 6-5 in his team’s favour.
After his first three raids ended in failure, Pirates skipper Pardeep Narwal found his feet and got his rival Rahul Chaudhari out in a do-or-die raid. Pardeep was at it again in the 11th minute when he earned two points to inflict the game’s first All Out. In the second match of the day, home side Puneri Paltan got the better of Anup Kumar-led Jaipur Pink Panthers, with a scoreline of 29-25.