Thalaivas' bad run of form in PKL continues

The Tamil Nadu team goes down to Haryana Steelers in Pune
Thalaivas' bad run of form in PKL continues
Haryana Steelers raider Vikas Kandola (in blue) was the star of the show against Tamil Thalaivas

Chennai

Tamil Thalaivas’ horrendous run of form in VIVO Pro Kabaddi 2019 continued as it fell 35-43 to Haryana Steelers at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex in Pune on Saturday.

Raider Rahul Chaudhari (10 points) notched up a ‘Super 10’, but it went in vain as Thalaivas failed to pick even a point from the contest. Vikas Kandola (13 points) and Vinay (10 points) were the chief contributors for Haryana, which is coming into its own at the right phase ofthe competition.

Steelers is placed third on the table with 54 points from 15 matches, while Thalaivas is rooted to the bottom with 27 points after 16 games. With the result, TT’s hopes of making it to the play-offs are all but over. Tamil has been winless for quite some time now and the exclusion of club captain Ajay Thakur was a surprise.

Haryana dominated the early stages, with Vikas Kandola ably supported by Vinay. As a result of their efforts, it closed in on an all-out. Thalaivas, which has looked toothless in the recent past, did pose some fight, but succumbed to its first all-out in the 14th minute. With a six-point deficit on the board, TT came out with renewed energy after the sweep, reducing the deficit to just two points (14-16) at half-time.

Rahul Chaudhari delivered a four-point raid in the first minute of the second period to enforce an all-out on Haryana. But Vikas Kandola upped his game and made sure Steelers had the ascendancy. Just when Thalaivas was staring at an all-out, Kenyan Victor Obeiro pulled it out of trouble with a ‘Super Tackle’.

But he couldn’t replicate the magic once again as Vikas Kandola helped HS inflict another all-out with less than six minutes left on the clock. Vinay then dished out a ‘Super Raid’ and that gave Haryana the cushion to cling on until the final whistle.

Pune defeats Gujarat

In the opening match of the Pune leg, home side Puneri Paltan came up with a composed performance to get the better of Gujarat Fortunegiants 43-33.

Nitin Tomar was the top-scorer, picking up a ‘Super 10’. Skipper Surjeet Singh and Balasaheb Jadhav got a ‘High 5’ each in the defence for the winning side. India cricketer Kedar Jadhav rendered the Indian national anthem ahead ofthe leg opener.

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