The collective performance of table-toppers Patna Pirates helped them beat the Telugu Titans 38-30 in the Pro Kabaddi League Season 8 and reach the semifinals.
Rider Tendulkar scored a Super 10 (14 points) and defender Mohammedreza Shadloi scored a high 5 (5 tackle points) as the Pirates once again showed why they are at the top of the points table with a win which helped them secure a top-2 finish. League stage.
The bottom-ranked Telugu Titans were already playing a match for pride as they were knocked out of the playoff race. They showed a glimpse of their potential once again but failed to control the match in the dying stages. The 8-point margin of defeat meant they walked out of the encounter without a point.
The Patna Pirates got off to a flying start by finding flaws in their attacking duo Guman Singh and Sachin’s Telugu defense. The Pirates rushed to the opening lead and closed at the allout. It was delayed by a super tackle on Mohammedreza Shadloi (for not crossing the block line) but the Pirates finally knocked out all the Titans on the mat to open a 7-point lead in the 7th minute.
The Titans had no intention of becoming an easy pushover and started fighting immediately. Rajneesh, with a heavy belt in his knee, found flaws in Patna’s defense so that his team could be slowly moved closer to the Pirates. His 3-point Super Raid in the 17th minute allowed the Titans to be all out on the table-toppers.
Adarsh then got a 2-point raid to be all-out and opened a one-point lead. The Patna Pirates soon returned to the lead through Sachin and brought in veteran Monu Goyat as a substitute to sharpen their attack. The score at half time was 21-20 in favor of the Pirates.
Tendulkar got his Super 10 in the second minute after half time but the Titans continued to beat the Pirates. His defense ensured that there were no easy point-ups for the Pirates’ raiders. Ankit Beniwal also started supporting Rajneesh in the raid as he took a 1-point lead. With 10 minutes left, the score was 27-26.
The depth of the Pirates’ squad means they continue to find answers to all the challenges that the Titans throw at them. 5 minutes after the first time out, Patna took the lead once again, leaving the Titans behind by 3 points. The momentum shift proved decisive as the Pirates were all out with 3 minutes left to open a 7-point lead. Rajneesh got his Super 10 for the Titans but it was a little important as the Pirates scored a crucial victory.