Bengaluru: It was yet another strong team performance by leaders U Mumba under the astute leadership of Anup Kumar that gave them their eleventh win in Season 2 of Star Sports Pro Kabaddi here today. U Mumba with this 32-27 win they remain at the top with 55 points. Patna had the small consolation of snatching a solitary point for the less than seven point margin of defeat. With 31 points now and two matches in hand Patna’s chances have taken a beating as they need to win both the remaining matches of which the one against Jaipur Pink Panthers should be the decider. The Pirates had lost 20-25 to U Mumba in the first leg.
U Mumba were slow to get off the blocks. The Pirates’ captain Sandeep started well with a rare pursuit that had Anup eliminated. A two pointer by Gurvinder saw them go ahead 4-0. But the toppers clawed back into the game and inflicted an all-out. Defender Mohit Chhillar got them going with a super tackle on Deepak Narwal. Shabeer Bapu back after along break due to injury gave them a two-pointer to give further momentum. At 6-6 they had caught up with the Pirates. Rishank Devadiga the do-or-die raid specialist gave them two points and Vishal Mane’s not too kind push on Amit Hooda saw the first of the two all-outs Patna suffered. That came in the 11th minute with the score at 12-6.
Not to be outdone by the aggressiveness of their opponents Pirates kept ticking the scoreboard to keep within catching distance of their opponents. Deepak Narwal and the fast improving Gurvinder Singh ensured that with their cunning. The latter came up with beautiful dives and turns to fool the rival defence. Patna stayed in the match trailing 12-15 at the breather.
The second half too was exciting but Mumba were again able to remain at least 4-5 points clear of their rivals. As is the trend Anup came back after spending almost 13 minutes on the bench to start his patent time-wasting tactics and also score at the same time. He had a tally of seven in the end. Rishank managed to score five and the strong Mumba defence manned by Mohit and Surender Nada, both as strong as ever contributed six and five respectively.
For the Pirates substitute Vijay Malik did a good job after replacing an injured Deepak. He narrowed down the margin to 22-18 but three consecutive successful raids by Anup guided Mumba to a second all-out. In the 39th minute at 29-18 the battle was lost for Patna. They did fight to use all their might and score an all-out. At 29-27 and less than two minutes left their hopes were dashed by Anup after he came back after two dismissals. And the last raid by Vijay Malik saw Mohit Chhillar trap him to cap a fine performance on the day.