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Pro Kabaddi: Puneri Paltan defeat U Mumba second time in PKL 2021

The Puneri Paltan edged out U Mumba 36-35 in the second Maharashtrian derby of PKL 2021.

Puneri Paltans Mohit Goyat PKL 2021

Puneri Paltan's Mohit Goyat escapes a tackle attempt by U Mumba


Abhijit Nair

Updated: 2 Feb 2022 4:36 PM GMT

The Puneri Paltan edged out U Mumba 36-35 in the second Maharashtrian derby of PKL 2021 to complete a double over their rivals this season.

The match started on an anti-climatic note for U Mumba as they lost their review just in the second raid of the match challenging a two-point raid by Aslam Inamdar. The Paltan's joy was however short-lived as Mumba bounced back rather strongly after that hiccup.

After a failed first tackle on Aslam, the Mumba defence got their act together within no-time to leave the Paltan reeling with just three-men on court. A super tackle by Abinesh Nadarajan on Ajith and a defensive lapse from Mumba helped them avert the all-out for some time, but they eventually crumbled to hand Mumba a 13-9 lead after 12 minutes.

With pressure firmly on them, Puneri Paltan rose to the occasion with a stunning super tackle from Aslam bringing them right back into the contest with three minutes left to the half time. The scores were level and U Mumba reduced to three men with 30 seconds left, but a defensive lapse from Paltan meant that U Mumba went into the break with a slender 19-18 lead.

The Paltan continued from where they left off in the second half to reduce Mumba to two-men but V Ajith stood like a wall between them and a possible lead, pocketing raid points at will. However, the Tamil Nadu lad could not continue for long as he was taken out in a do-or-die raid while trying to outsmart the Paltan defence by entering the lobby without a touch.

Right after Ajith was taken out, Mumba crumbled and were wiped out as the Paltan took 29-26 lead with 10 minutes left in the match. They further extended their lead, but a stunning super tackle by Rinku on a leaping Mohit Goyat kept Mumba alive in the contest with five minutes left.

Ajith soon completed his third Super 10 of the season and Aslam committed the mistake of relying on bonus during a do-or-die raid as Mumba drew level at 31-31 to reduce the Paltan to three men and keep the match hanging by a thread.

A Super tackle then by Abinesh Nadarajan to complete his High 5 once again gave Puneri Paltan the edge. With the clock ticking down, the Paltan defence tightened the screws further with two more successful tackles to register their fourth successive win of the season.

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