Ajinkya Pawar’s extraordinary six-point raid in the dying minutes of the game against Telugu Titans helped the Tamil Thalaivas continue its resurgence and register a 39-31 win in the ProKabaddi League on Saturday.
The raid was a big point of contention with many questioning its validity, given the impact it eventually had on the game’s result.AS IT HAPPENED: FULL HIGHLIGHTS - TAMIL THALAIVAS 39-31 TELUGU TITANS
Here’s how the raid transpired:
With a little over a minute and a half left in the game, the two sides were headed for a tight finish with scores reading 30-29 in favour of the men in yellow. Siddharth Desai had picked up some steam and the Titans had an advantage given that they had reduced the Thalaivas to just two men on the court.
Ajinkya Pawar came in to raid, presumably looking to at least get a bonus and head back so the Thalaivas could play on the super tackle. He swiftly went in for the toe touch on the right cover defender.
Vijay Kumar, ahead of the raid, told his team in a chaotic huddle that he would attempt the tackle but Mohsen Maghsoudlou dived first getting a hold on Pawar’s left leg. Vijay rushes in to back that up, followed by the central and right chains.
At this point, Pawar was under the pile of Titans defenders with only Desai away from this group. The referee was seen gesturing with his hands to ease out, for the safety of the raider stuck under the pile one would assume, and the Titans seemed to think they had their man.
However, Pawar continued to struggle and very sneakily got out of the pile from the back as Mohsen and Vijay’s holds eased. It was enough for him to pull his upper body out of the block, scramble over the Titans defenders below him and get his hand over the midline.
Desai seemed to notice what was about to happen at the very last minute but the damage was done before he could make it to Pawar’s side.
Pawar’s hand took Vishal Bhardwaj by surprise as the Titans defenders believed that they had done enough to deny Pawar any points from that raid. However, the clock was still running, the kabaddi chant was still on and the whistle went off after Pawar’s emphatic hit on the mat beyond the midline. The result was a massive six-point raid for the Thalaivas which took to the score to 36-29 in their favour with 1:30 left on the clock.
The Titans were caught napping and were understandably livid as the referee started counting the men to send off. Desai turning away with his hands on his head made clear the big shift in momentum and advantage in the game which the Thalaivas eventually won 39-31.
Watch the full raid in the video above or here.
OTHER CONTENTIOUS SUPER RAIDS IN PKL HISTORY:
Pardeep Narwal’s eight point raid
Mohammad Esmail Nabibakhsh’s eight (technical) points scalp