Bengaluru: A superlative effort by substitute Pawan Kumar who was unleashed late in the match by coach Randhir Singh Sherawat enabled Bengaluru Bulls slay former champs Jaipur Pink Panthers 36-26 in the Season 3 Star Sports Pro Kabaddi. The winners trailed 13-14 at the break in a game where safety first was the policy for both sides. The game hotted up in the second half when Bengaluru Bulls staved off an all-out and turned the tables on their opponents to themselves score a second all-out in the 32nd minute for a substantial 26-21 lead.
Smarting under two consecutive defeats the home side benefitted from the absence of star rival raider Jasvir Singh, who has injured his shoulder. But that should not take away the credit from the young Bengaluru Bulls led by Surjeet Narwal. The other hero for the winners was defender Ashish Kumar who had a tally of seven points of which six came through his timely blocks and holds.
Due credit has also to be given to Amit Rathi the veteran raider. He kept the score ticking in the first half and in the second he first scored two points in a raid and came up with a super tackle to bridge the gap from 14-19 to 18-19 and subsequently snatch the lead at 20-19. Then came another super tackle of the match from Shrikant Tewthia on Rajesh Narwal to make amends for his earlier lapses.
Seeing the opportunity Randhir who had earlier brought on Vinoth Kumar to repair the damage made that crucial move to bring in Pawan Kumar which caught the Jaipur Pink Panthers unawares. He scored a whopping seven points in six raids to seal the fate of the match. Bengaluru Bulls went from strength to strength to goup31-23 by the 38th minute after Ashish Kumar choked Sonu Narwal, Ran Singh and Navneet Gautam to inflict the third all-out for a well-deserved win.
Rajesh Narwal score 11 points of which 9 were raiding points. He ploughed a lone furrow for the former champions. Add to that the weakness in defence and Jaipur Pink Panthers story of the day becomes complete.
The top three on the table are Telugu Titans (11), Bengal Warriors (10) and Patna Pirates (10). Bengaluru Bulls occupy the fifth slot behind U Mumba who too have 10 points.